World Cup, heat-stress costs, and DEI summit

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World Cup worker deaths

As the World Cup craze is taking the world by storm, British broadcaster Piers Morgan asked Qatar’s Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy Hassan Al-Thawadi about the number of migrant worker deaths from any construction related with the World Cup.

He answered that an estimated 400 to 500 workers have lost their lives, although the exact number is being discussed. Apparently there have been “three work-related deaths and 37 non-work-related deaths” for the “stadiums and projects that they’re responsible for.” He also added that one death is a death too many and that every year, the health and safety standards on the sites are improving.

The cost of heat stress

The buzz around heat stress have died down now that winter’s here but the impact doesn’t seem like it’s going to change with the seasons.

A report published by Public Citizen states that employers’ failure to mitigate the effects of heat stress on workers costs US $100 billion each year. Not to mention the heat-related illness, injury, and fatalities that could be prevented.

The report also found that the physical and mental capacity of workers to function drops significantly as heat and humidity increase. Productivity of workers declines approximately 2.6% per degree Celsius above a Wet Bulb Globe Temperature of 75.2°F.

The lowest-paid 20% of workers suffer five times as many heat-related injuries as the highest-paid 20% and that medical costs increase 41.6% per degree Celsius when the temperature exceeds 91.4°F.

ASSP’s DEI summit

The ASSP opened registration last week for a free virtual summit on diversity, equity and inclusion in the occupational safety and health profession. The online event taking place on January 26 will be open to all EHS professionals. Seats are limited and first come, first serve so make sure to book your spot early.