Construction workers face many hazards on each shift. There are four specific hazards that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) classify as being the most dangerous ones because they are responsible for the most deaths in this industry. By addressing the Fatal Four issues, construction companies can greatly enhance the safety of their workers and prevent hundreds of on-the-job fatalities.
- Falls: This is the top cause of worker deaths in the industry. It accounts for around 36% of construction worker deaths. Preventing incidents can be as simple as using proper fall arrest equipment and having adequate protocols to reduce the risk of someone falling.
- Struck by objects: This accounts for around 10% of fatalities. It includes things like objects falling onto workers. It also encompasses incidents involving workers being hit by machinery or equipment. Securing items and using spotters around moving machinery can prevent these accidents.
- Electrocutions: This accounts for around 9% of worker deaths. Using lockout/tagout procedures can help prevent incidents from occurring. Power tools should be checked for fraying, and contact with overhead power lines must be avoided.
- Caught in/between: This accounts for around 2% of construction worker deaths. These incidents include workers being pinned between moving objects and trench or other structure collapses. Setting up safe zones and using supportive measures for all structures can prevent these deaths.
If you were injured in a construction accident due to one of the Fatal Four or any other type of incident, workers’ compensation benefits may help you get the medical care you need. They can also provide you with partial wage replacement if you aren’t able to return to work quickly after the injury.