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8 Aug 2023

Italy: 5 workers die from extreme heat as factory workers & labourers call for furlough

In July 2023, temperatures in Italy climbed past 40 degrees Celsius. Low-income workers were left among the most vulnerable. According to a report by the European Trade Union Institute, precarious workers including immigrants, self-employed workers and those paid on the basis of piece rates are most at risk for dehydration and overexposure to heat. Workers across Italy threatened to go on strike and labour unions called for furlough to mitigate the dangerous working conditions.

On July 22, 2023, the Guardian reported on the deaths of five people, believed to have been caused by extreme heat exposure. Among the workers who died are Ciro Adinolfi, who passed away while operating a crane at an Amazon warehouse construction site, and Gabriele Lucido, who was discovered dead in his lodgings following his shift at a construction site of the Italy-France high-speed rail project known as TAV.

We invited Amazon and Rete Ferroviaria Italiana to respond to the deaths and to outline measures they are taking to protect workers during extreme heat. The responses of Amazon and Cepav due, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana's general contractor, are available below.