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Summer jobs: you need the money, but are you safe?

On Behalf of | Jun 17, 2021 | Workers' Compensation

As a high school or college student, earning extra cash over the summer might be the only way for you to afford your tuition, books and social events. Many of these seasonal positions are outdoors, such as for landscaping, waterparks, fairs and camps.

You might enjoy basking in the sun, but exerting yourself in high temperatures could put you at risk.

Outdoor work is no day at the beach

The human body is primarily self-regulating; you sweat when you need to cool down. However, there are several health concerns related to a disrupted system caused by extreme heat.

Various conditions can result from hot weather. During the summer months, carefully monitor yourself for heat rash and signs of:

  • Heat cramps
  • Heat exhaustion
  • Heatstroke

It’s easy to assume overheating is unavoidable or your fault. However, in some situations, an employer might fall short of their ability to keep you safe.

Your boss should help you stay cool

The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) educates employers about providing safe work environments. Still, heat and humidity negatively affect thousands of workers each year.

Employers must recognize and prevent heat-related illnesses and injuries. This involves:

  • Planning for emergencies
  • Training employees on how to protect themselves from the heat
  • Providing shade, rest breaks and water
  • Gradually increasing workloads as workers develop a tolerance for working in high temperatures

Workers’ compensation can help you make the most of your situation if you fall ill on the job and need to miss work or seek medical attention. Although no manager is able to regulate the weather conditions, you can explore your legal rights if your employer doesn’t provide adequate protection.