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INDOT taking precautions for workers during heat wave

INDOT takes precautions for workers during heat wave

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indiana Department of Transportation is pulling off all the stops to make sure its workers and contract employees are safe in the oppressive heat.

INDOT Spokesperson Kyleigh Cramer says workers’ hours are being shifted so they can start at 6 a.m., and they are taking plenty of water breaks

“We also have cooling towels. We rotate jobs so some people are working on strenuous ones, and we rotate them out to ones that aren’t so strenuous,” said Cramer.

Most work sites have air-conditioned trucks workers can take refuge in during their breaks. Each day starts with a safety briefing where the talk normally centers around the type of jobs that have to be completed.

“Those safety briefings, we all go over, ‘it’s going to be hot today, this is what the day is going to bring, this is the temperature we’re having. Our main concern today is your safety with heat, heat exposure,’” said Cramer.

Workers can wear lightweight protective gear and hats that also cover the back of their necks. The extra layers of safety and change in schedules won’t slow down productivity.

“We’ve had folks here for 40 years. We’ve had folks here for 2 weeks. People know going into this line of work what they are going into for the summer. They also know they are going to be out there during those hot times, and again with those cold times,” Cramer said.

INDOT also has employees working overnight year round from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m.