Workers' Compensation Lawyer
Allentown · Bethlehem ·
Lehigh Valley
(610) 814-3120
Free Case Consultation

Excessive Heat Increases Risk of Work-Related Injuries

A construction worker is standing outdoors, looking upwards with a pained or tired expression on his face due to the heat and difficult working conditions.

As outdoor temperatures climb, so does the risk of workplace injuries, according to a recent study from the Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI). This comprehensive analysis examined workers' compensation claims and weather data from 24 states between 2016 and 2021. It uncovered a clear link between rising temperatures and increased workplace injuries and illnesses.

Study shows heat poses a risk to workers

The study's findings paint a concerning picture for workers across various industries, especially those who spend significant time outdoors or in environments without adequate climate control. From construction sites to factories, the data suggests that heat doesn't just make work uncomfortable – it makes it downright dangerous.

If you find yourself suffering from a heat-related injury or illness at work, consulting with an experienced Pennsylvania workers' compensation lawyer can help you navigate the complex claims process and ensure you receive the benefits you deserve.

How does excessive heat affect injury rates?

According to the WCRI study, on days when temperatures reach 85-90°F, workers face a 4.3% higher chance of injury compared to milder 65-70°F days. However, when temperatures climb to 90-95°F, the injury risk jumps to 5.3% above the baseline. At 95°F and above, workers are about 6% more likely to get hurt on the job.

These percentages might seem small, but they translate to thousands of additional injuries across the workforce. For example, workers may experience heat exhaustion, heat stroke, extreme dehydration, and other heat-related illnesses. On top of that, extreme temperatures can cause fatigue and dizziness, which can lead to an increased risk of workplace accidents and injuries.

The study also found that excessive heat has a greater impact on traumatic injuries. This includes fractures, dislocations, contusions, and lacerations. These types of injuries often result from accidents like falls, equipment malfunctions, or lapses in concentration.

How does excessive heat impact construction workers?

The construction industry is particularly vulnerable to heat-related injury risks. The physical demands of construction work, combined with direct sun exposure and limited access to cooling, create a perfect storm for heat-related accidents. When temperatures hit 90-95°F, construction workers face a staggering 14% higher chance of injury compared to 65-70°F days. In the 95-100°F range, the injury risk for construction workers soars to 20% above the baseline.

Do regional differences exist in heat-related injuries?

Interestingly, the study uncovered some surprising regional variations. As expected, workers in the South showed a higher risk of injury under elevated temperatures, likely due to more frequent exposure to excessive heat. However, the Northeast experienced an 8% rise in injuries when temperatures reached 90-100°F, compared to the 65-70°F baseline.

This finding suggests that workers in traditionally cooler regions might be less accustomed to extreme heat. Their lack of preparation makes them more susceptible to heat-related accidents when temperatures spike. It also highlights the importance of implementing heat safety measures across all regions, not just those known for hot climates.

Get the compensation you're entitled to after a heat-related work injury

Have you been injured on the job due to extreme heat in Pennsylvania? You have the right to seek workers' compensation benefits for medical costs, lost wages, and rehabilitation. With offices in Allentown and Bethlehem, Vellner Law, PC has been fighting for the rights of injured workers in the Lehigh Valley for decades.

We can help you with everything from filing your initial claim, appealing a denial, and even representing you in court if necessary. Our personalized approach ensures you receive the medical care you need and the financial support you're entitled to while recovering. Don't face this challenging time alone. Contact us online or call us today for a free consultation. We'll listen to your story, assess your case, and outline a strategy to protect your rights and secure your compensation.

Categories: Posts
Request Free Case consultation