A construction site can be a hazardous place to work, and it is easy to see why so many injuries occur in the construction industry. Power tools can malfunction. The weight of construction materials can cause strain in workers’ day-to-day activities and cause serious injury if dropped. Heavy equipment can be particularly dangerous if companies do not train workers properly or properly maintain their equipment. Many of these workplace injuries can be fatal.
The Occupational Health and Safety Administration has found that four specific types of accident cause most of the deaths in the construction industry, often called the “fatal four.” OSHA’s fatal four includes:
· Falls-Because many construction workers must navigate ladders, scaffolds and other heights, falls on construction sites can do a great deal of damage. OSHA reports that falls cause 36% of deaths.
· Strikes from objects-Falling objects and other hazards can catastrophically injure workers, and these accidents account for 10% of construction fatalities.
· Electrocutions-Faulty equipment and power tool usage in wet conditions can cause electrocutions, an injury that causes 9% of construction industry deaths.
· Being caught in or between objects, machinery or equipment-Heavy machinery and large construction materials pose a great danger to those stuck between them. Injuries from these incidents cause 2% of deaths in the construction industry.
Construction work can be dangerous, but contractors and other employers on a construction site can take steps to make their work sites safer for employees and passers-by alike. If you or a loved one falls victim to one of OSHA’s fatal four or another accident on a construction site, you may be able to take legal action against negligent employers and get the financial support you need to move forward.