City health officials say a Philadelphia man has died due to this week’s extreme heat. It marks the first heat-related death of the summer on the hottest day of the year.
Police found the body of a 57-year-old man inside his West Oak Lane home Thursday morning.
Authorities say the man died from Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease and heat exposure. The man had an air conditioner inside his home but it was not operating. The victim’s identity has not been released.
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On Thursday, temperatures reached 98 degrees just short of last year's record of 100. It also marked the longest persisting heat wave of the year with temperatures soaring into the 90s for the last four days.
The brutal heat also took a toll on roofers working in Delaware County. Three roofers working on the roof of the Chichester Middle School on Meeting House Road were hospitalized after suffering from heat exhaustion. A fourth roofer was treated at the scene, according to officials.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says they are investigating the incident.
“Today’s incident is a reminder that extreme heat can have extreme consequences (heat stress, dehydration, heat stroke, death) for those who work outdoors, like construction and agricultural workers,” according to Deputy Regional Director Joanna Hawkins. “It is crucial that we spread the word about the importance of heat safety to employers and employees across the greater Philadelphia area, as the temperature tomorrow is expected to reach nearly 100 degrees.”
OSHA says anyone working outdoors should do the following:
• Drink water every 15 minutes, even if you're not thirsty.
• Rest in the shade to cool down.
• Wear a hat and light-colored clothing.
• Learn the signs of heat illness and what to do in an emergency.
• Keep an eye on fellow workers.