OPP, Ala. (WDHN)—With this Ongoing heat wave in the wiregrass, area cities and towns are trying to mitigate the “mercury readings” for their employees who have to work outside.

In Opp, WDHN’s Mike Gurspan tells us the mayor is having the town’s road and bridge workers come in an hour earlier to “avoid” the
main heat of the day.

Opp Mayor Becky Bracke says the heat is more than just an inconvenience. For her road and bridge employees., those triple-digits could prove to
be dangerous.

With this in mind, Opp’s department heads moved up an hour the time their outdoor personnel comes into work.
The new format is from 6:30 in the morning till 2:30 in the afternoon. An effort to keep laborers’ from being
outdoors during the “hottest” period of the day.

Mayor Bracke says “and what we’re doing is letting them come in at 6:30 and leave at 2:30. And they try and get all the labor done in the early part of the morning and then the hottest part they are staying in, doing light jobs and all.”

Gurspan says “for one longtime city laborer the high temperatures means he has to get as much work done early as possible before the real heat of the day starts to set in.”
Several city workers say the new hours for the summer do help in beating the heat.

City employee Jay Swiatek says “that’s right, that’s why I keep on going and a lot of times the guys I work with can’t keep up so I stop for them. So the best thing is to keep on moving that’s the best way to handle it? If you can put up with all the sweat in your eyes, you’ll be fine.”

The mayor says “I don’t know, somebody asked me the other day if I remember it ever being this hot, this long in June and I really don’t.”
In addition to coming in earlier, city department heads are making sure each work crew has plenty of
Water, sports drinks, and ice.

Reporting in Opp, Mike Gurspan WDHN News for the wiregrass.