OSHA to focus on reducing heat-related hazards in the workplace Email
Written by Colorado Green NOW   
Tuesday, September 21, 2021 02:00 AM

Colorado Green NowAfter a summer of record-breaking temperatures and extreme weather events, OSHA has been tasked with developing a standard for safety in extreme heat. Along with the new standard, OSHA will also develop a program to emphasize heat safety in inspections and has issued guidance on inspections related to heat safety compliance.

From the OSHA news release:

OSHA Area Directors across the nation will institute the following:

  • Prioritize inspections of heat-related complaints, referrals and employer-reported illnesses and initiate an onsite investigation where possible.
  • Instruct compliance safety and health officers, during their travels to job sites, to conduct an intervention (providing the agency's heat poster/wallet card, discuss the importance of easy access to cool water, cooling areas and acclimatization) or opening an inspection when they observe employees performing strenuous work in hot conditions.
  • Expand the scope of other inspections to address heat-related hazards where worksite conditions or other evidence indicates these hazards may be present.

In October 2021, OSHA will take a significant step toward a federal heat standard to ensure protections in workplaces across the country by issuing an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on heat injury and illness prevention in outdoor and indoor work settings. The advance notice will initiate a comment period allowing OSHA to gather diverse perspectives and technical expertise on topics including heat stress thresholds, heat acclimatization planning, exposure monitoring, and strategies to protect workers.

Read the statement from OSHA. 

Read the White House statement.

Read the OSHA guidance on heat safety inspections.

Read more in this issue of Colorado Green Now:
Technician boot camp offers hands-on training and test prep
Employers await OSHA vaccine mandate
Landscape pros encouraged to participate in Denver Green Code update

Sustainability House renovation update