State Shuts Down Farm in Heat Death Case

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - California workplace safety officials have shut down a Kern County farm operator after a farmworker employed by the company died of possible heat-related causes.

The state's Division of Occupational Safety and Health said on Tuesday that McFarland-based Etchegaray Farms LLC failed to provide workers access to shade, follow high heat procedures or institute emergency procedures and train workers in how to use them.

Officials said a 37-year-old farmworker was checking irrigation equipment in the company's lemon orchard near the community of Richgrove, east of Delano in Tulare County, on Friday afternoon when he collapsed.

Temperatures reached 106 degrees that afternoon in Richgrove.

The worker was identified by the United Farmworkers of America as Juan Ochoa.

Etchegaray Farms must cease all outdoor work at all locations until it remedies the problems

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