The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Southeastern Subcontractors Inc., Middleburg, Fla., for failing to protect employees from the dangerous hazards of working outdoors in extreme heat after an employee died from hyperthermia while working at a residential site in Jacksonville, Fla., according to www.osha.gov. The company is not an NRCA member.
Hyperthermia occurs when the body's temperature is abnormally high because it cannot regulate the heat from the environment. OSHA issued one serious citation for exposing employees to heat-related injuries and one other-than-serious violation for failing to report a workplace fatality to OSHA within eight hours of its occurrence. The company faces proposed penalties of $22,173.
"Employees exposed to heat on the job—whether indoors or outdoors—are at an increased risk of suffering heat-related illnesses, such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke," says Brian Sturtecky, OSHA Jacksonville area office director. "Tragedies such as these can be prevented if employers develop and implement a heat-illness prevention program and provide employees with water, rest and shade."
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.