Can Heat-Related Injuries Be Claimed Through Worker's Compensation?

In much of the country, the heat of the summer months can be too much to handle. If there are heat advisories in place, doctors and health experts encourage those who can be inside at least during the hottest portion of the day. However, this is not possible for certain professions, especially those who work in certain industries. In these industries, it is the responsibility of the employer to make sure all employees have access to the tools they need to remain cool. If you are injured as a result of the scorching heat, you may have a case for workers' compensation. Here are some things you need to know:

How Can You Be Injured by Heat?

Heatstroke is the most common cause of injuries in those who work in hot weather conditions. You can suffer flu-like symptoms and become very sick. Heat exhaustion can also happen in hot working conditions. Heat cramps can also occur. All these illnesses can be very dangerous and can result in serious injuries.

How Is an Employer Responsible for Heat-Related Injuries?

All employers must provide a safe workplace for their employees. This includes ensuring employees have a way to keep cool during times where heat is at its peak. Employers must make sure employees receive adequate time for periodic breaks to cool down. There should also be access to cold water to make sure all employees are properly hydrated.

In addition, employers must make sure employees have the proper work attire to make sure they can protect themselves, such as hats and light-colored clothing. Employers should also regularly monitor the daily temperature and heat index. Any instances of severe heat advisories should warrant schedule changes to ensure employees remain safe.

How Can You Receive Workers' Compensation?

If you are injured due to hot working conditions, you will likely have to miss some time at work. You can file a workers' compensation claim for those lost days at work. You can also receive payment for your medical expenses. If you are so sick that you will be out of work for an extended period, you need to make sure you are receiving payment for your lost wages.

Any injuries that occur at work should be covered by your employer's workers' compensation insurance. That includes injuries that occur due to excessive heat exposure. If your employer denies your claim, you can hire a workers' compensation lawyer for an appeal.