Local construction workers brave the heat


QUINCY (WGEM) – A job that requires long hours in the sun is more likely to be exhausted from heat.

Matt Koontz, vice president of Dale Koontz Builder, said he and his staff had seen it before.

To prevent it from happening again, he and his crew wear sunscreen, take breaks from work and drink plenty of water.

“We’re big advocates of taking frequent water breaks and not just taking care of yourself but taking care of your boys and making sure anyone you work with isn’t acting weird or moving around – I still get hydrated” said Koontz.

With temperatures getting warmer earlier in the day, construction workers try to brave the heat by starting their work around 6 a.m.

When framer Chris Benz sees an employee stumble or behave differently due to the heat, he says he knows exactly what to do.

“I mean, if I see a person slowing down and not behaving normally, I would just call a break for everyone, find a shady spot, sit down, give them something to drink and keep an eye on them,” said Benz .

Last week, Blessing Hospital administrators said they had seen an increase in patients with heat-related side effects or chronic illnesses exacerbated by heat.

Nurse Jaryn Black explained what to do when someone you know is suffering from heat exhaustion.

“First of all, if they get dizzy and stand up when they can sit safely on the floor, it’s always better because it makes them fall lower to the floor. But then also that you move away from the heat and go to a cool or shady place, “said Black.

Black said you should see a doctor if your symptoms are severe or don’t get better.

To avoid heat exhaustion, she recommends wearing light, loose-fitting clothing, staying hydrated with decaf, wearing sunscreen, and avoiding the sun for long periods of time.

Common signs and symptoms of heat-related illness include headache, increased heart and breathing rates, dizziness, nausea, confusion, and vomiting.


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