The U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced on Tuesday a national stress program aimed at conducting more heat-related workplace inspections to protect workers from injury or death, which it says has doubled since the 1990s.
OSHA said in a statement that the National Emphasis Program is a way to “immediately improve compliance and compliance, while continuing long-term work to establish a rule for the prevention of heat diseases.”
As part of the program, OSHA will proactively initiate inspections in over 70 high-risk industries in indoor and outdoor work environments once the National Weather Service has issued a heat warning or advice for a local area. On days when the heat index is 80 degrees or higher, OSHA inspectors and compliance assistance specialists will engage in proactive outreach and technical assistance. OSHA said inspectors will look for and address heat risks during inspections, regardless of whether the industry is focused on the focus program.