The Asunción Valdivia Heat Illness and Fatality Prevention Act is now working its way through the legislative process.
In late July, the House Labor and Education Committee advanced a bill, by a vote of 27-19, that would direct the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to establish an enforceable standard that protects workers in jobs at risk for hazardous heat stress.
The bill would also extend the statute of limitations for OSHA to issue a citation for a violation of the new standard from six months to four years and sets requirements for training and education aimed at preventing and responding to heat illness, as well as whistle-blower protections.
OSHA launches first-ever NEP on heat illness and injury
Through this program, OSHA will conduct heat-related workplace inspections before workers suffer completely preventable injuries, illnesses or worse, fatalities.
As part of the program, OSHA will proactively initiate pre-planned inspections in over 70 high-risk industries in indoor and outdoor work settings when the National Weather Service has issued a heat warning or advisory for a local area. The list includes certain farming and agricultural businesses.
OSHA has inspected 564 workplaces for heat illness since April 2022.
Harvest Safety Week 2022 focusing on the heat
The National Grain and Feed Association’s annual Harvest Safety Week, being held August 22-26, will have a special emphasis on heat-related illnesses and how they impact grain processing employees.
Additional safety resources and heat illness prevention tips can be found by visiting ngfa.org/safety.
Be sure to follow #HarvestSafetyWeek for more information.
Heat-related illness resources
- Tips to Keep Employees Cool
- NGFA Safety Tips: Heat- and Cold-Related Injuries (National Grain and Feed Association)
- Overview: Working in Outdoor and Indoor Heat Environments (OSHA)
- OSHA National Emphasis Program on Outdoor and Indoor Heat Hazards
- Fact Sheet of Asunción Valdivia Heat Illness and Fatality Prevention Act