Construction worker rescued from pit scaffolding after suffering cardiac arrest

A stretcher basket is lowered into a pit as fire crews attend to a construction worker after he suffered a heart attack. Credit: KTRK TV HoustonA stretcher basket is lowered into a pit as fire crews attend to a construction worker after he suffered a heart attack. Credit: KTRK TV Houston

Firefighters rescued a construction worker Monday afternoon after he suffered a heart attack on a downtown Houston jobsite.

According to a report from KTRK TV, the worker was on scaffolding inside of a pit that is part of the excavation work for a new convention center hotel in the city. The man was about 20 feet off the ground when he suffered cardiac arrest.

It’s unclear if the cardiac arrest was brought on by the heat. KTRK reports that he suffered “heat exhaustion” on their website, but a video accompanying the story calls it a “cardiac arrest”. In the video on the KTRK website, another worker can be seen fanning the man with a folded box.

No mention of a heat stroke is made but the heat index at the time was 95 degrees, meaning workers on the site were at moderate risk of heat exhaustion, according to an Occupational Safety and Health Administration scale.

Firefighters brought the man down from the scaffolding and then lifted him out of the pit using a stretcher basket. He was taken to a hospital and listed in stable condition.

Each year, thousands of workers suffer illness brought on by heat exhaustion. You can find OSHA resources regarding heat exhaustion as well as 10 tips on how to deal with heat on the jobsite by clicking here.