Daniel Rivera was soaked in sweat when he got into his car in San Bernardino, California. As the external temperature was finally descending below the 100-degree mark, he switched on the air conditioning. Initially, the relief didn't differ much from standing near the fans at the Amazon air hub's loading docks, where he had just spent 10 hours handling pallets.
Not long ago, Rivera had implored regulators during a workplace safety hearing to finally put into practice the indoor heat protections that state legislators had instituted back in 2016.
Rivera is part of the approximately 1.8 million individuals laboring in U.S. warehouses, where rapid, physically demanding tasks like box loading can elevate body temperatures to perilous levels that many climate control systems struggle to combat, according to researchers, advocates, and authorities. As e-commerce fuels a surge in warehousing activity in some of the country's hottest regions, regulations have lagged the heat-related hazards in workplaces, ranging from mild discomfort to life-threatening conditions. To continue reading, click here.