Virtually every year around this time, California safety officials turn to the topic of summer weather, and for good reason.
It can kill.
Not every worker in the state happily toils in an air-conditioned office building throughout the summer months, and California regulations that discuss heat-related dangers and safety requirements are firmly focused upon those that don't.
In broad pockets across the San Joaquin Valley and other areas of Central and Northern California, high numbers of workers spend most of their work time during peak-heat season outdoors, being engaged in activities ranging from agriculture and construction to landscaping and park/recreational work.
Even during moderate weather, those employment pursuits come with some singular safety concerns. When heat is added to the mix, things can become truly dangerous -- even deadly -- for some employees going about their duties.
California safety officials want employers duly focused upon that, with Cal/OSHA head Juliann Sum recently stating that her agency will focus heavily this summer on "enforcement targeting those companies who put their workers' safety at risk."
California has an official "heat illness standard" that regulators are currently pointing to, with attendant demands that employers pay due heed to stated guidelines and policies for protecting employees who work while exposed to ratcheted-up temperatures.
Centrally, those are all about common sense and elevating workers' safety over immediate profits.
Cal/OSHA authorities say that California companies had better pay close attention to heat-related mandates. Safety officials will be conducting random inspections this summer at outdoor work venues.