First day of summer spells headaches for workers

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First day of summer spells headaches for workers

CREATED Jun 20, 2012

Meteorologist: Aaron Brackett

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - 18 of the first 20 days of June have been at or above 100 degrees. Wednesday afternoon brought the beginning of Summer, which promises much more heat to come.

Adam Goldberg of Northwest Fire responded to Tuesday's Costco worker who collapsed in the 104 degree weather.

"[Workers] indicated that the gentleman had suffered some heat related illness symptoms about two hours prior to his collapse," Goldberg said. "They indicated he was taking a lot of breaks, running out of energy, was very thirsty, and about two hours prior to his collapse, he had dry heaves, was nauseous, and was vomiting."

Even though the mercury may read 100-105 officially, it can be much hotter where workers are actually spending time.

In a conference call with the U.S. Secretary of Labor and the National Weather Service, Acting Director Steven Cooper said: "the first days workers are out in the heat are the worst because they aren't adjusted yet"

Goldberg says in the end, it all comes down to personal responsibility.

"I have no doubt that we will continue to have hot days, and if people don't continue to take precautions ahead of time, recognize early on that they are having trouble, and change their behaviors, we will see another one."

Rocky Shamburg of Cox Communications says his company drastically changes how they treat and schedule employees during the year's hottest months.

"If we are doing attic work for instance, we will try to keep that limited to the morning time frame, and its also up to the technician," Shamburg said. "The technician knows best what his body can handle, but after 10:00, if there was an attic job, we wouldn't let him go in there because it gets pretty warm in there. We schedule all of that in the morning, and reduce the workload in the afternoon."

Goldberg says to drink plenty of water. If you think you have had enough, he advises to continue drinking.