What Are Some Of The Biggest Risks Construction Workers Face?

Safety violations and other mishaps lead to hundreds of construction worker deaths each year.

It is no secret that the construction industry is one of the country's most dangerous jobs to work for. Construction workers in Ohio and across the nation put their lives at risk every day to build the structures and roads that many people take for granted. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, fatal injuries in the construction industry rose by 6 percent in 2014.

Safety Violations

Strict regulations are set in place by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration to prevent construction workers from being injured in accidents. These include using safety equipment, receiving proper training and observing numerous rules on the jobsite. Even so, it is rare for OSHA officials to inspect a construction site that has no safety violations. Some of the most common types of safety violations in construction include the following:

  • · Scaffolding - Instead of being built on a stable surface or fully planked, scaffolds may be flimsy or not have their walking surfaces covered, resulting in a large number of falls each year.
  • · Grounding - Construction workers often fail to observe proper grounding procedures or de-energize electrical wires or cables before working on them.
  • · Excavations - It is not uncommon for trenches and other excavations to lack the required bracing or shoring to prevent cave-ins, as well as fast escape routes.

Safety violations frequently contribute to a type of accident that is considered one of the "fatal four." According to EHS Today, the fatal four were responsible for 57 percent of construction deaths in 2012. It is estimated that 435 workers lose their lives every year as a result of one of these types of accidents. The fatal four include falls (the top cause of all construction accidents), being caught between machinery or objects, electrocutions and being struck by objects.

One tragic accident that occurred recently highlighted the sudden danger of a fatal four-type mishap. According to the Detroit Free Press, workers for a demolition company were demolishing a building in Beverly, when a conveyor belt line housing fell and struck several workers. Two were injured, and the president of the company was killed. It was unknown whether a safety violation, equipment malfunction or other preventable cause was responsible for the accident.

Construction accidents often cause devastating injuries that go beyond the scope of an ordinary workplace injury, and may result in permanent disability. If you or a loved one was impacted in a construction accident, it may help to contact an Ohio personal injury attorney to discuss your options.

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