Driving around construction sites in Golden, Colorado, can be a pain, but the area ultimately benefits from well-maintained roads and buildings. However, it is well-known that construction is a hazardous industry to work in. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, in 2019 just over 1,060 construction workers lost their lives and over 200,000 suffered injuries in on-the-job accidents. The following are four common causes of construction accidents.
Cause 1: Falls
Falls, for this purpose, includes falls from heights such as ladders and scaffolding as well as slips and trips on uneven surfaces, misplaced tools, spills and leaks. Falls are a common cause of construction worker injury. Employers need to ensure their worksites are clean and well lit. The use of appropriate fall equipment, following safety regulations when using ladders and making sure to use the three contact points when entering and exiting heavy machinery.
Cause 2: Being struck by an object
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration defines “being struck by an object” as an injury caused by the impact between a worker and an object or piece of equipment. For example, this may include being hit by a falling hammer or struck by a piece of heavy machinery. Employers should ensure vulnerable areas are marked or blocked out and that employees have the necessary personal protective equipment.
Cause 3: Electrocution
Electrocutions often result in burns, cardiac arrest and nerve damage. Some of these injuries can be fatal. It is important for employers to ensure they are following OSHA regulations on covering requirements, proper use of electrical equipment and the use of protective devices and adequate insulation.
Cause 4: Caught in/between
A caught in/between incident takes place when a worker is trapped between two objects. For example, if a vehicle pins a worker against a wall or materials collapse on a worker, this constitutes a caught in/between accident. It is necessary for workers to stay focused to avoid being the victim of a caught in/between accident.
What happens if you are involved in a construction accident?
If you are injured on-the-job due to the acts of a third party, or in limited circumstances your employer, you may wonder if you have any legal recourse. Depending on the circumstances it may be possible to bring a personal injury lawsuit. These claims can be complex, so it is important to make sure you understand all your rights and options before proceeding.