Increasing numbers of patients are going to emergency rooms in rural towns due to the heat wave in the Western United States. The unusually extreme temperatures this season have been putting farmworkers in grave danger. Laws protecting these workers fall short, even in California, the state with the strictest labor laws. To get an up-close look at the dangers faced by farmworkers, Heidi de Marco visited Thermal, a town in the arid Coachella Valley, which hit a record high of 122 degrees in August. This report was produced in collaboration with Kaiser Health News and California Healthline.
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