Young Immigrant Dies of Heat Stress

Date First Published on SafetySmart Compliance: November 28th, 2011
Topics: Heat & Cold Stress |

A 19-year-old immigrant from Mexico died from heat stress on the job in Fort Worth, TX, where he reportedly never saw a paycheck.

With less than $5 in his pocket, Faustino Varela collapsed in the heat at a construction site where he was working as a laborer. Evidence indicates that Varela was an illegal immigrant who had only been in the US for a few weeks.

Witnesses stated that Varela was complaining of feeling ill on the job, where the temperature was about 100F (38C). He lost consciousness and later died in hospital. Family members suspect Varela didn’t ask his employer for a break because of his illegal status.

Varela’s death is now the subject of an investigation by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).