Construction workers have a dangerous job, and many construction workers become severely injured or killed in construction accidents. Every year, hundreds of construction workers die from preventable construction accidents. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), over 4,000 construction workers, or one out of every 100 construction workers, suffer an injury while on the job every year. One out of every five worker deaths take place within the construction industry. There are many different causes of construction accidents, and we have listed the ten most common causes below.
1) Falling From Great Heights
Despite safety regulations requiring construction workers to wear harnesses while on ladders, falls continue to be a common cause of construction accidents. According to OSHA, 338 out of every 1,008 total construction-related deaths were from falls in 2018. Often, construction workers do not have the property fall protection, or their employers failed to require compliance with safety regulations intended to prevent falls from happening. Construction workers often fall from scaffolding, ladders, and roofs. Sadly, many fall accidents result in death, and they could have been prevented with better safety standards.
2) Falling Objects
When the construction workers are working on buildings with two or more stories or working with scaffolding, it is common for tools, building materials, or beams to fall and strike the workers below. In one case in New York City, a teenager became injured after a beam fell on him and paralyzed him. Construction accident employers and employees have a legal duty to keep their objects in safe locations, so they do not fall and injure other people. Brain injuries and spinal cord injuries are common when a falling object collides with a person down below.
3) Machinery Accidents
One of the aspects that makes construction work so dangerous is the large Machinery construction workers must use. Unfortunately, some construction employers do not adequately train their employees on using heavy machinery and equipment. As a result, experienced workers may cause accidents by misusing the machines. In other cases, the intoxicated worker may use a machine and cause an accident, or the machine itself could be malfunctioning due to negligent maintenance or defective parts.
Cranes are frequently used in construction work, especially on jobs involving skyscrapers. Many new cranes require operators to read in-depth, lengthy user manuals before they can safely operate them. A crane accident does not only affect the crane operator. Cranes can hurt or kill multiple people, especially when the crane or debris falls on innocent pedestrians and bystanders. Bulldozers and jackhammers are also dangerous construction tools. All it takes is a few seconds of distraction for a construction worker to cause serious injuries. Even tools like hammers and nail guns can cause injuries when they are not functioning properly or have been negligently maintained.
4) Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, but they are especially common on construction sites. Site managers are responsible for making sure their employees clean up their areas and leave the forest free from debris and tools. Slip and fall accidents can always be dangerous; however, they are even more dangerous when construction workers are on scaffolding or on the roof. Construction workers can also slip and fall on uneven ground or in holes when site managers do not place warning signs around the hole.
5) Explosions and Fire
As with any job site, accidents involving explosion and fire can cause severe third-degree burns. In some cases, construction workers are in closed areas and have difficulty escaping the job site while fire rapidly spreads. Many construction job sites have machinery or tools that use oil or other inflammable products, increasing the risk of a dangerous explosion. Leaking gases, unfinished piping, incomplete or damaged electrical systems, explosions, and fires are common causes of construction site injuries.
6) Getting Caught Between Materials or Objects
Crushing accidents are also common on construction sites. Accidents happen when a worker becomes caught between a heavy machine in the wall or between different objects and is crushed. Construction sites are extremely noisy, and the heavy machinery driver may not hear the tract individual shouting at them to stop.
7) Getting Hit by a Car
Construction job sites often have many employees working at once, each focused on their own tasks. It can be easy for a truck driver or machine operator to back into one of their co-workers, causing devastating injuries. Additionally, construction job sites are often near busy highways and roads. Distracted drivers may run over a construction worker while not paying attention to the road in front of them.
The danger of electrocution is always present on construction job sites. Many construction job sites involve electrical wiring and old buildings. This combination can be deadly when a construction worker is not properly trained or fails to use safety protocols on the job site.
9) Overexertion Causing Fatigue
Many construction workers are tired, and being exhausted and working with dangerous heavy machinery is a dangerous combination. Construction workers may drift off while operating a crane or other large machine and cause severe injuries or even death.
10) The building, Scaffolding, and Trench Collapses
Every year, we hear about construction accidents involving scaffolding or building collapses. Job supervisors have a duty to ensure that the scaffolding, trenches, and building platforms are safe, so their employees do not fall and become severely injured. When they fail to do so, they can be held liable for the injuries caused by accidents.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you or your loved one have become injured or died in a construction accident, it is essential that you contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, especially when someone else’s negligence caused your injuries. Contact Pulvers Thompson today to schedule your initial consultation.