Yesterday, the Oregon Home Builders Association (OHBA) learned that Governor Brown ordered Oregon OSHA to adopt emergency rules related to working outdoors or indoors during high heat. New rules go into effect this Thursday morning. The issues discussed included, but were not limited to: Complete shutdown of outside work on days over 90 degrees Paid “heat-leave” for workers Emergency rules now, permanent rules later Additional specific workplace rules based on a mix of California and Washington heat rules. The good news is that there will be a single set of rules this “heat-year” to satisfy the governor’s order, then a stakeholder process for permanent rules next year. OHBA suggested a single set of rules that aligned with Washington for this year, and then will monitor the permanent rulemaking over the summer and fall. The temporary rules generally align with Washington which will aid our members working in both states. The temporary rules will be designed with two thresholds: an 80 degree requirement and a 90 degree requirement. No shut down of work and no paid leave through this first emergency rule. The important thing members needs to know is to make sure workers have access to natural or artificial shade and water that is no warmer than 77 degrees. Over 90 degree heat index will require 10 minute breaks in the shade every two hours. Shade can be a small pop-up canopy, a tarp to block the sun, or trees. No shade, then a vehicle with AC needs to be available. All aspects of the below table go into effect Thursday morning, except for the employee training and communication/observation rules. Again, builders should take measures ASAP to make sure there is water and shade available if over 80 degrees heat index. OHBA does not have a final copy of the rules, but the chart found here identifies how the new thresholds work. Once we have a final set of emergency rules, OHBA will develop model training programs and the necessary assessment tools/forms to aid contractors. The highlighted areas go into effect tomorrow! Builders may want to download the “Heat Index App” from NIOSH on their smartphone and become familiar with identifying the heat index for your location and communicate with subs, supervisors and employees regarding access to water and shade as part of the new rules going into effect.