If you work on a construction site, you’re putting your faith into the organization you’re working for that all the necessary safety measures and precautions have been taken.
While you can be sure that all safety measures have been taken. Due to the inherent nature of construction work, there is always a risk present, and accidents do happen.
In fact, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), there were around 195,600 construction workers injured on-site in 2019. More worrying than that, there were also 5,333 fatalities.
That works out at about 10% of all construction workers sustaining some form of injury on-site. While construction fatalities account for 1 in every 5 work-related deaths.
To help raise awareness of the hazards and risks involved in working on a construction site, here’s a look at the most common construction accidents:
The Most Common Construction Accidents
According to OSHA, slips, and falls, tripping over, and anything that causes someone to fall a distance great enough to cause harm is the number one cause of construction accidents. Falls are also the number cause of fatalities, accounting for around 33% of all construction fatalities.
The best way to reduce the risk of falling is to plan ahead, and always make sure workers have the right equipment to carry out their jobs.
It’s also important to provide ongoing training and raise awareness of any falling risks and hazards. Employers should be aware that workers working six feet and upwards are at a much greater risk of injury and require more care.
The truth is that many – but not all – fall-related accidents are avoidable. Many organizations have been able to see a decrease in fall-related accidents. Primarily by raising awareness of potential risks, improving training, and ensuring they supply the right equipment.
Struck by Hazardous Objects
Being struck by falling objects is the second most common construction accident. These types of accidents account for around 10% of all construction accidents.
At most construction sites, workers handle loose materials and tools while working at height. These may be tools to carry out their work, carrying materials, handing materials to another worker, and so on.
Any loose object can be fall, slip, or even blown loose by winds if not properly secured. This results in the object falling to the ground below.
If that object strikes a worker, it can cause serious injury. Even light objects can cause severe brain injuries after falling a great distance.
Improved training, providing the necessary safety equipment, and safely securing materials when they’re not in use is the best way to reduce this type of construction site injury. This is why hard hats are mandatory, but object hazards still account for a huge amount of injuries.
The third most common construction accident is electrocution. The construction industry accounts for a similar number of electrocutions as all other industries combined. So, it’s a serious hazard that construction workers face.
The risk is highest for workers that are directly working with electrical equipment, like those who regularly work with power lines.
There may also be exposed wires on-site and various other electrical hazards that workers need to stay alert of.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cite time pressure and the use of contractors as the main contributing factors to electrocutions. Creating a culture of safe electrical practices and providing good training is the best way to reduce electrical injuries.
Caught-In and Between
Caught-in and between accidents are the fourth most common cause of injuries in the construction industry.
These are accidents that occur when a worker accidentally gets part of their body caught, stuck, compressed, crushed, or injured between two or more objects.
Being caught inside moving machinery is a common example of a caught-in and between accident. Other examples include: falling into trenches, collapsing walls, falling scaffolding, and receiving injuries from vehicles.
The best way to reduce these types of injuries is by providing training and promoting awareness of these types of hazards.
The ‘Fatal Four’ Construction Injuries
The four common types of construction injuries above are referred to as the ‘Fatal Four’ by OSHA. OSHA is the federal agency responsible for enforcing safety standards in workplaces and ensuring workers are as safe as possible.
Each year, OSHA reviews construction-related injuries and produces a report with their findings. In 2019, OSHA reports that the Fatal Four accidents were responsible for around 58% of all worker deaths.
The facts are that even with the highest standard of safety on a construction site, accidents can and do happen. Construction is one of the most dangerous industries in the US and accounts for more work-related injuries than any other industry.
We’re Here To Help
Have you been injured on the job while working on a construction site? Being unable to work due to an injury can have a devastating impact on a worker and their family.
Not only are you facing a potentially lengthy healing process, but you may also not be financially compensated by your employer.
For this reason, it’s important you call our offices and speak with one of our experienced personal injury attorneys as soon as possible.
Michael LaScala has been representing injured workers in Atlanta for many years. He always fights to secure the maximum possible compensation.
Contact the LaScala Firm at (404) 881-8866 or by submitting a contact form. We’ll get right back to you to arrange a time to discuss your case.