News & Events

Summer heat can cause illnesses for people working outside

News & Events

Summer heat can cause illnesses for people working outside
By Elizabeth Hadley - KMVT

GOODING, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) – Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion can be common problems for people who work outside.

Stacy Hillier has worked for Road Work Ahead for more than 15 years, first doing road work and now as the traffic control manager. She says the hot summer sun can cause a toll on one’s body.

“If you can’t stand to be outside and be in the heat and take it, then you should probably look for another job, because you have to be outside, and the asphalt, when you are on fresh asphalt it’s even hotter, it may be 90 degrees outside, but when you are on that asphalt it’s at least 120 to 140 degrees,” Hillier said.

Hydrating and wearing sunscreen are the best ways to prevent becoming overheated Hillier said.

VIDEO: Summer heat can cause illnesses for people working outside

We also have vests that we have, these are survey vests that we have, but if you unzip the back you can put frozen water bottles in there, that’s what I used to do to keep myself cool,” said Hillier.

Doctor Jay Blacksher at North Canyon Medical Center has seen many farmers, ranchers, and construction workers come in to his emergency room with heat related illnesses. Heat Stroke is often fatal.

“The interesting thing to help you discriminate between heat stroke and heat exhaustion, is people with heat exhaustion will be sweating, but people with heat stroke no longer have the ability to sweat, and so their clothes may be wet because they have been sweating, but their skin will be hot flush and dry,” said Blacksher.

Heat exhaustion can be identified by dizziness, nausea, and sweating. Going to a cool place and hydrating will help the person feel better. Heat stroke is when the body temperature rises to 104 or 105 degrees and hospitalization is needed.

Staying hydrated and wearing clothes to protect your skin from the sun can prevent heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

“Hydration, hydration, hydration and avoid working or doing stressful physical activity in the hottest times of the day, and frequently give yourself a break and get into the shade or a cool environment,” said Blacksher.

North Canyon Medical Center