By: David Cheverie
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), one in ten construction workers is injured annually. It’s a harrowing statistic, especially since some injuries could have been prevented. Falls are the most common type of accident, accounting for 22% of accidents construction workers report. Other common injuries include falling objects, equipment-related accidents, heavy machinery/construction vehicle incidents, fires and explosions, trench or building collapses, and repetitive motion injuries. Here’s how you can avoid common types of construction injuries.
Common Injuries on Construction Sites
The most common types of injuries that occur at construction sites include broken bones, cuts or lacerations, amputation, burns, eye injuries, shoulder, knee, or ankle injuries (sprains and overuse), loss of hearing, and head or traumatic brain injuries. Falls occur when a worker falls from scaffolding, cranes, roofs, ladders, or other highly positioned objects. A fall can lead to fractures, displacements, strains, or traumatic brain injury (TBI). Equipment-related injuries occur when equipment malfunctions or is being misused. Heavy machinery poses a threat when being improperly operated or the machinery is faulty. Some construction sites contain hazardous conditions, leading to fires and explosions. Trench or building collapses may occur without warning and can cause serious injury to all persons on a job site. Repetitive motion injuries are almost impossible to escape, given the necessary duties of a construction worker. These motions can also lead to overexertion or heat stroke.
Use Proper Safety Measures
While some accidents are unavoidable, other injuries could be prevented with proper safety measures. There are several measures a construction worker can take to avoid injury. While on a construction site, it is important to be constantly aware of your surroundings and to wear proper safety gear. Many incidents are not preventable, but injuries can be minimized if an employee wears protective hats, gloves, goggles, high-visibility clothing, etc. It is also important to keep the worksite clean. Clearing a job site of clutter and mess is not easy, yet it will aid in preventing trips and falls. Equipment-related injuries can be prevented by ensuring all equipment is regularly inspected.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, it is estimated that 60% of construction workplace injuries occur within the employee’s first year; a more experienced, better-trained worker is less prone to injury, which shows that training is necessary for creating a safe job site. In 2014, 1 in 5 worker deaths were in the construction industry. When operating heavy machinery, it is important to operate “defensively,” meaning that an employee should operate all machinery carefully, slowly, and with undivided attention. Personal care is also essential while working on a construction site. To ensure that a worker is not sustaining any long-term damage to his/her body, an employee should attend regular physical examinations. An employee should also ensure enough rest, given that many workers operate dangerous equipment on the job.
Call Our Personal Injury Attorneys
Even while taking these precautions, an employee may still be injured on the job. The injury may result from a faulty product, improper managerial actions, or poor working conditions. In these cases, there is a specific party at fault. At Hach & Rose, LLP, our personal injury lawyers have over a decade of experience in construction claims. If you or a loved one has been injured on a construction site, do not hesitate to call (212) 779-0057 for a free consultation with one of our experienced construction accident attorneys or visit us on the web at www.unionlawfirm.com. Hach & Rose, LLP, will work with you to seek justice against those responsible for your injury.