Worker misclassification is a serious problem in the construction industry that often goes unchecked and unpunished. Penalties for misclassifying employees as independent contractors can be severe, but unfortunately, the risk of getting caught has historically been minimal. They payoff for unscrupulous business owners who purposely misclassify workers can be enormous. It’s a classic risk vs. reward scenario where, for the most part, the rewards for purposely misclassifying workers as independent contractors far outweighed the risks of getting caught.
The construction industry continues to hold the top spot on a list that it isn’t proud of—total annual worker deaths. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ revised Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, there 4,821 fatal occupational injuries in the U.S. in 2014. (Note: This is the most recent year for which data is available.) In the construction industry there were 899 worker deaths, which is about 18.65% of total fatal work injuries. This is the largest number of construction worker deaths since 2008.
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Is your construction company still not using Building Information Modeling (BIM)? If your firm hasn’t adopted BIM yet I’m sure there’s a valid reason. Perhaps you think it’s too expensive or you don’t have the resources to implement adoption. Maybe your estimators love spending countless hours doing manual takeoffs from plans and specs when preparing bids. It could be you enjoy doing costly rework that eats away at your profits.
Are you doing everything you can to minimize your workers’ exposure to heat-related illnesses? Does your company have a heat illness prevention program in place? We’ve go you covered with these tips and guidelines for keeping your workers safe and productive during these hot summer days.
Technically, the first day of summer doesn't arrive until next Monday when the summer solstice occurs, but parts of the country have already seen record or near-record highs this month. The folks over at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are predicting a hotter than normal summer for most parts of the country. The dog days of summer will soon be upon us and the higher temperatures bring with it the danger of suffering heat-related illnesses at the construction site. Construction workers are at a high risk for heat-related illnesses due to the strenuous nature of their jobs and prolonged exposure to the heat and humidity brought on during the summer months.
Most of the focus on applying 3D printing technology to the construction industry revolves around building structures. The world’s first 3D printed office building opened this week in Dubai which has set a goal of 3D printing 25% of all buildings in the city by 2030. Taking just 17 days to print and two days to assemble, the 2,700-square-foot building was printed by WinSun Decoration Design Engineering. Back in 2014, WinSun printed 10 single-room buildings in a span of 24 hours. They followed that up last year by 3D printing a five-story apartment building and a nearly 12,000-square-foot villa.
Earlier this month, Gilbane Building Co. proposed that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) should require construction workers to wear safety harnesses whenever they are working at a height of 6 feet or more above a lower level. This requirement is part of Gilbane’s safety program, which they claim has prevented 20 potential fatalities since 2011. It’s hard to argue with a company that has won multiple industry safety awards with a safety program that has resulted in 95% of projects completed having zero lost time injuries and 80% of projects finished with zero recordable injuries in 2015.
Is cybersecurity a major concern for your construction business? Maybe you don’t think your company is a potential target for a cyberattack. You’d be right too if your company doesn’t use computers to store any information about your business and if you never connect to the internet.
In honor of Earth Day today, we're taking a look at some of the greenest and most sustainable buildings throughout the world. Since measuring the greenest or the most sustainable or even the most eco-friendly building is nearly impossible to do, we chose a few of our favorites that highlight and showcase the many ways architects and construction companies are using design, materials and technology to create more sustainable buildings.