Could Farm Deaths be Heat Related?

By: Associated Press and WTVY
By: Associated Press and WTVY

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) -- California officials say they are investigating six possible heat-related deaths, including two cases of two farmworkers who collapsed while harvesting crops.

A spokeswoman for the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health said Thursday her agency is reviewing whether a 47-year-old
worker in Blythe died because he was operating a tractor to harvest
cantaloupes in 102-degree heat on July 7. Spokeswoman Erika Monterroza says it's also investigating the April death of a 56-year-old farmworker who was breaking corn in 84-degree heat in Imperial County.

Other cases under investigation involve a drilling crew floorman, a police officer, a temporary laborer and a grading foreman, who all died in June.

In all six cases, coroners have not confirmed the cause of death.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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