Having a job that requires work outside of an office is a dream for many. Being able to enjoy varying daily sights and fresh air are just two benefits that non-office workers take pleasure in. Though there are various benefits differing from those who work indoors, there are also different risks and hazards that outdoor workers can face. Weather changes and extreme temperatures can pose serious health risks, and if an injury or death occurs on the job, employers may be responsible for workers’ compensation.
One type of worker who must be out in all types of weather is the mail carriers. They deliver mail whether it is raining, snowing or showing signs of high temperatures. Unfortunately for a Massachusetts mailman, the high temperatures that he was working in may have cost him his life. The man had stayed after his shift had ended in order to complete another shift. While on this route, he collapsed and had to be taken to the hospital, where he later died.
It was reported that his temperature was 110 degrees. This death, among others, has sparked the interest of many to voice the opinion that OSHA should implement national standards for working in high temperature conditions. OSHA does have guidelines in place for workers who must face extreme heat exposure, and it is important for employers to ensure that those guidelines are followed by employees to reduce the risk of heat-related illness or death.
The man’s wife is undoubtedly devastated by the loss of her husband, who she had been texting earlier that day. As her husband died while on the job, she may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits may be helpful to her while she arranges her husband’s untimely funeral. She may find looking into Massachusetts workers’ compensation laws beneficial to understand what type of compensation she may be eligible.
Source: EHS Today, “Heat Blamed for Death of Massachusetts Postal Worker,” Sandy Smith, July 8, 2013