Our industry has submitted comments on new regulations the state is drafting regarding Indoor Heat Illness.

In 2005, California became the first state—and still the only state in the nation—to adopt a heat illness prevention standard to protect outdoor workers (California Code of Regulations, Title 8, Section 3395). The outdoor heat illness prevention standard requires employers to provide outdoor workers with water, shade, rest breaks, and training. Known as the high heat provisions, additional requirements apply when the outdoor temperature exceeds 95 degrees.

In 2016, CalChamber and a large coalition of businesses opposed SB 1167, which sought to establish a regulation to prevent heat illness for indoor workers. The coalition maintained that a specific regulation is unnecessary because current regulations (Title 8, Section 3203 Illness and Injury Prevention Program) require employers to identify and address workplace hazards, including the risk of heat illness in indoor workplaces.

In 2017, Cal/OSHA convened two stakeholder advisory committees to tackle the challenge of reaching consensus among interested parties from industry, labor, management and academia on how to regulate the prevention of heat illness for indoor workers. To date, Cal/OSHA has provided draft rules and a formal rulemaking has begun. These draft rules propose to regulate all indoor workplaces for these purposes.

Believe it or not, defining an indoor workplace, as opposed to an outdoor workplace, has proven to be challenging, including determining when vehicles and equipment are indoor or outdoor. Many employers have both outdoor and indoor workplaces, with some or all employees transitioning between both.

These questions of scope require industry input to provide Cal/OSHA the most rational and complete understanding of operations and risks, as well as rational, feasible policies to address those identified risks.

We are partnered with the CalChamber and have submitted a fourth set of comments on a fourth draft of the Cal/OSHA proposed draft indoor heat illness rule as it will ultimately have an impact on you.

Click here for more information from the CalChamber about the large coalition of employers that are working together to make sure these rules can be implemented in a way that makes sense and minimizes unnecessary costs.

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