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If a Texas worker dies in the summer heat, who is responsible?

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2022 | Construction Law

While much of the country is still dealing with snow, the weather in Texas is heating up. Anyone who has lived here for a while knows that temperatures in Texas in the summer can become brutally hot. In fact, it is not uncommon for temperatures to go above 90 degrees Fahrenheit, which not only makes it uncomfortable for people working outside but also can make it dangerous. Under those circumstances, heatstroke often develops. In fact, according to data that the federal government has gathered over the last 10 years, the number of deaths related to the heat has almost doubled. It is also believed that those statistics, according to the report, are most likely an underestimation.

Many of those deaths occurred in the waste management, construction, and mining and fossil fuel industries. When a situation such as death from heatstroke occurs, it is typical that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) gets involved. However, because no national standard actually exists, it is difficult for the situation to change.

Who should take responsibility when a death is caused by extreme heat?

One possible measure that may help to create a safer situation is if the business owners and employees go through training. However, most likely, training will not totally eliminate deaths although it may help to decrease the number of people who die as a result of high temperatures.

One of the industries in which there are a number of people who pass away from heat-related conditions each year is the construction industry. As a construction business owner, you probably have received communications from OSHA or some other agency with tips about how to identify and control (to some extent) the hazards that occur because of extreme temperatures. Hopefully, those tips have helped to improve the situation.

Obtaining valuable legal representation

If you own a construction business, in today’s market, your business is probably booming. Across the United States, new buildings (residential and commercial) are being built at a rapid rate. In this competitive construction market, you probably have a lot of work but you also may have a lot of competition. Considering the heat in Texas, it is probably wise to obtain the services of a knowledgeable construction lawyer, who may be able to help you navigate through any issues that you may encounter connected to potentially dangerous conditions due to heat. It is essential that you understand your rights, protect your business, and gain the knowledge that you need when situations arise under such conditions.