July 2022: Nevada OSHA Adopts Federal OSHA’s Heat Program

07 Jul

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Update Applicable to:
All employers with employees in heat-related hazardous areas in the state of Nevada

What happened?

On May 4, 2022, Nevada OSHA announced that it will be adopting the federal OSHA’s National Emphasis Program (NEP) on indoor and outdoor heat-related hazards that expand on the agency’s ongoing heat-related illness prevention campaign.

What are the details?
Effective June 15, 2022, Nevada OSHA will proactively initiate inspections in over 70 high-risk industries prescribed by federal OSHA and additional industries identified by Nevada OSHA. These inspections will cover indoor and outdoor settings when the National Weather Service has issued a heat warning or advisory for a local area. This NEP shall remain effective until canceled or modified by a change to the federal NEP or adoption of a Nevada-specific heat illness regulation.

On heat priority days Nevada OSHA will do the following:

  • Initiate compliance assistance in the targeted high-risk industries.
  • Inspect any alleged heat-related fatality/catastrophe, complaint, or referral regardless of whether the worksite falls within a targeted industry of this NEP.
  • Engage in proactive outreach and technical/compliance assistance to help keep workers safe on the job.

Heat Warning/Heat Advisory Days the National Weather Service (NWS) provides the following types of warnings, alerts, and advisories:

  • Heat Advisory: A heat advisory is issued within 12 hours of the onset of extremely dangerous heat conditions. The general rule of thumb for this advisory is that the maximum heat index temperature is expected to be 100°F or higher for at least two days, and nighttime air temperatures will not drop below 75°F.
  • Heat Wave: A heat wave is forecasted when the daily maximum temperature exceeds 95°F or when the daily maximum temperature exceeds 90°F and is 9°F or more above the maximum reached on proceeding days.
  • Excessive Heat Warning: An excessive heat warning is issued within 12 hours of the onset of extremely dangerous heat conditions. The general rule of thumb for this warning is that the maximum heat index temperature is expected to be 105°F or higher for at least two days and nighttime air temperatures will not drop below 75°F.
  • Excessive Heat Watch: Heat watches are issued when conditions are favorable for an excessive heat event in the next 24 to 72 hours. A watch is used when the risk of a heat wave has increased but its occurrence and timing are still uncertain.
  • Excessive Heat Outlook: Outlooks are issued when the potential exists for an excessive heat event in the next three to seven days. An outlook provides information to those who need considerable lead time to prepare for the event.

For more information, please see the links below:

OSHA Nevada Announcement

Article

What do employers need to do?
Employers should review the links provided above, implement safety policies to protect their employees from the heat, and keep them informed that some health conditions, including pregnancy, heart disease, and obesity may increase the likelihood of a heat-related illness.

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