FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IR #2005-48
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Internet: http://www.dir.ca.gov

CONTACT:
Dean Fryer
Renee Bacchini
(415) 703-5050


Cal/OSHA announces an extension of the emergency regulation deadline for heat illness protection

Sacramento - The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) today announced the approval of an extension of the emergency regulation expiration date for heat illness prevention. The emergency regulation, due to expire today, Dec. 21, was extended by the Office of Administrative Law, allowing workers to remain protected while Cal/OSHA finalizes a permanent regulation. This regulation represents the first heat illness prevention regulation in the nation.

"This regulation requires employers to take basic steps to prevent further heat related illnesses or fatalities in California," said Len Welsh, acting chief of Cal/OSHA. "We are now working to finalize a permanent regulation that will continue these protections into the future."

On Aug. 22 the state Office of Administrative Law approved the emergency regulation for heat illness prevention. In conjunction, Cal/OSHA began the process of developing a proposal for a permanent heat illness prevention regulation. The public was provided opportunities to comment at meetings held on Sept. 20 and Nov. 14, and public comments have also been submitted in writing. Cal/OSHA and the Labor and Workforce Development Agency continue to work with the Cal/OSHA Standards Board, and worker and employer communities towards the adoption of permanent regulation.

Cal/OSHA, actively educating employers and workers on methods of heat stress avoidance, launched a campaign this summer that included an advisory bulletin, a Spanish language radio blitz, and a Web page outlining preventative measures. Cal/OSHA inspectors also distribute information and talk to workers as they inspect work sites with outdoor workers.

To find out more about protecting outdoor workers from heat stress visit our Web site at www.dir.ca.gov or call 510-286-7000.

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