In Order To Protect Workers, Florida Businesses Need To Change

In Order To Protect Workers, Florida Businesses Need To Change Florida residents will have experienced the severity of weather events over the past few years, and the increasing temperatures which make holidays pleasant – but work less so. According to OSHA, another business was fined following the death of a worker in excess heat, as employees have been expected to get on with their jobs despite skyrocketing temperatures. As 2023 rolls around and South Florida gets ready for another set of hot seasons, it’s time for employers to start really thinking about their liability, and what they can do to make work safe and pleasant for the hard workers of the state.

Protecting the workplace

The workplace itself has always had risks associated with it that employers need to take accountability for. Florida, with its wet and humid weather, has always presented the risk of slips and falls which can lead to negligent security settlements for employers. Heat is another key risk, and the burden is only growing larger; according to McKinsey, the South Florida area will face another 25 record breaking days of heat each coming year. Of course, the state has always been hot, and workers expect to work in difficult conditions – but there comes a point where it tips over into a hostile atmosphere. What’s more, there is now federal attention coming down on the issue of heat in the workplace, and that’s not just confined to high-pressure environments like in manufacturing.

Federal directives

New initiatives have now been put in place by the national administration to stop workplace deaths occurring due to heat. According to, these will empower OSHA to create more stringent regulations over what workers will be expected to work under, and create impetus for state-wide action on disproportionate heat impacts. This is being resisted by state authorities, but will be a necessary change to help the average American find safety and comfort during their working hours. When it comes to actually implementing this, South Florida has some options.

Embracing new heat

According to the Miami New Times, the heat index is set to rise to above 100 points in 2023, with 91 days above that level. This is defined as dangerous levels of heat, where being outside for persistent hours will lead to dehydration and sunburn among other difficulties. Accordingly, employers must set up facilities ahead of time. This, in itself, can be simple. Shade must be provided through the day, to enable breaks out of the sun. An area to store cold drinks, and running water, must be provided, even in remote sites or construction. Ultimately, businesses must also be willing to shut down if they cannot provide the right level of protection – human lives are more important than cash.

Awareness of these greater risks is important, and accepting that change needs to happen is a crucial step for business owners. Employees deserve safety and security at work, regardless of changing climate – making that a priority will set South Florida businesses above the rest.


South Florida Caribbean News

The Team provides news and information for the Caribbean-American community in South Florida and beyond.

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