Tag Archives: Cal/OSHA Safety

If an Employee Has a Heart Attack-Are You Prepared? And it is Reportable to OSHA Immediately ALSO!

5 Feb

 Thousands of people each year will suffer a   heart attack. Many of these people will have these attacks at the workplace.   By knowing what to do can save that person’s life.


February is Heart   Disease Awareness Month, so take the opportunity to give your workers   first-aid training for heart attacks so they don’t panic if they encounter a coworker in trouble. Begin by making them aware of the signs that someone is   having a heart attack.


  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing;

  • Anxiety;

  • Crushing pain in the chest;

  • Pain radiating down the left arm, or in the jaw;

  • Ashen color to skin; and

  • Perspiration, nausea, or     vomiting.

During a heart   attack, act immediately. Many people wait too long because they don’t recognize the important signs and symptoms.

What to do if you see someone having a heart attack

  •   If you encounter someone who is suffering or unconscious from a presumed heart   attack, call for emergency medical help.
  •   If they are unconscious and you have received training in   emergency procedures, begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). This helps deliver oxygen to the body and brain.
  •   According to guidelines by the American Heart Association, regardless of whether you’ve been trained, you should begin CPR with chest compressions. Press down about two inches (about five centimeters)   on the person’s chest for each compression at a rate of about 100 a minute.   If you’ve been trained in CPR, check the person’s airway and deliver rescue   breaths after every 30 compressions. If you haven’t been trained, continue   doing compressions only.
  •   In the initial minutes, a heart attack can also trigger ventricular   fibrillation, a condition in which the heart quivers uselessly. Without immediate treatment, ventricular fibrillation leads to sudden death. The timely use of an automatic external defibrillator (AED), which shocks the   heart back into a normal rhythm, can provide emergency treatment before a person having a heart attack reaches the hospital.

If an employee is transported to a hospital or emergency room by first responders, then you MUST Call CAL/OSHA and report an apparent serious injury or illness (reports are required within 8 hours – but do it now!) 

Cal/OSHA has ruled that a heart attack at work constitutes an accident because it is “an event or condition occurring by chance or arising from unknown or remote causes.”  Know that the emergency ambulance or fire crew that transported your employee will report to Cal/OSHA and if you fail to file a report within 8 hours, you will be fined $5,000!  As I reported in an blog a few weeks ago, a list of offices is available at: http://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/DistrictOffices.htm