New Heat Rules Are Now In Effect - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New Heat Rules Are Now In Effect

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PASCO, Wash.-- The new heat rules for the workplace have been a work in progress. Last April many people were at a forum held by Department of Labor and Industries, to give their opinion.

Don Pratt was one of them.

"I was against it, I just felt like it was really an unnecessary rule," said Don Pratt, a general contractor.

Like Pratt many say the new rules are common sense. But as of Saturday contractors around the state had to make some changes.

"In our weekly safety meetings, we've been talking about heat stress and some of the symptoms," said Pratt.

Each contractor is responsible for providing water to their workers. A common practice many already had in place.

"I don't think a whole lot has really changed for us other than now it's a requirement instead of a suggestion," said Pratt.

In his 30 years of experience Pratt says he's never seen a worker go down because of the heat, but that's not the case for everyone.

"I had a new guy that was just drinking coke to stay hydrated so I went and got him some Gatorade and some water," said Wade Urban, a construction worker.

Wade Urban says most construction workers can find shade to take breaks, and for lunch time, they prefer to go somewhere cooler.

Going home early isn't part of the rules, but sometimes it's an option.

"Last Monday or something I think it was about 106 and we only made it about six hours because we were just too beat to go home," said Urban.

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