The California Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (“Cal/OSHA”) has completed its public comment and discussion period regarding newly proposed Indoor Heat Illness Prevention Regulations. These regulations would generally apply to all indoor work areas where temperatures equal or exceed 82 degrees, and will require employers to:
- Provide employees access to potable drinking water which is fresh, pure, suitably cool, and at no cost to employees;
- Provide employees access to one or more cool-down areas, with a temperature maintained at less than 82 degrees, located as close as practicable to the areas where employees are working;
- Allow and encourage employees to take preventative cool-down rests when the employee feels the need to do so;
- Provide employees with personal protection equipment if they are unable to use engineering or administrative controls to manage temperatures; and
- Establish and implement a heat illness prevention plan and provide employees with applicable training.
While these proposed regulations have not yet been voted on by Cal/OSHA, they could be implemented for summer 2024. Businesses that may be affected by these new regulations should be prepared to evaluate their current policies, practices, and work areas in order to comply with new regulations.
Related practice team: Labor and Employment