Warmer weather means that roadwork season is in full effect which means more and more work zones are popping up on our interstates, highways, and streets. It’s also the time of year when more people are on the road traveling greater distances to the beach, mountains, and other vacation spots.
Construction is one of the most dangerous industries to work in which is why programs and initiatives like Construction Safety Week (May 3 - 7, 2021) are so important to raising awareness about the importance of construction safety. Of the 5,333 worker deaths in 2019, 1,061 were in construction. That means out of every five worker deaths in 2019 was in construction, a percentage that has remained fairly constant over the last several years.
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Ask any construction business owner, regardless of the size of their firm, what their top priority is and we’re guessing you’ll get the same response every time: worker safety. The real question owners should constantly be asking themselves is whether or not their safety program is robust enough to meet their commitment to protecting their workers.
Construction sites house nearly 6.5 million American workers and their safety is a key concern for employers. Despite this, the fatality rate in the construction industry is the highest in the U.S. Workers at these sites constantly have to monitor the possible risks of falls, misuse of equipment, and structural failures resulting in injury or death. This makes it extremely crucial for business leaders to establish a culture that prioritizes safety at all costs.
Most jobs are already tough enough without cuts and bruises. Add these hand injuries into the equation, and you get a whole new level of complication. Worst of all, some injuries could even keep you away from work. Nothing could help prevent these injuries better than a pair of high-quality work gloves—they reduce the risk of occupational injury by up to 70%.
The construction industry again had the highest number of fatalities of all industries in 2019 with 1,061 worker deaths. This is a 5.3% increase over the 1,008 fatal injuries in 2018. It’s the highest total since 2007 when the industry recorded 1,204 fatal work injuries. The construction industry represented 21.6% of all private industry worker deaths in 2019.
Safety should be the number one priority of every construction company. Unfortunately, there are many myths and misconceptions about safety that are taken as fact. Believing these myths can lead to unsafe work practices and lead to accidents and injuries on the jobsite.
This article was originally published on August 10, 2016. Last updated on May 22, 2020. We all know that fall hazards are the leading cause of construction worker deaths, accounting for about 33.5% of all fatalities in construction each year. Of the 338 construction worker fatalities attributed to falls in 2018, close to 15% were from scaffolds. OSHA estimates that about 65% of all construction workers perform some work on scaffolds every year. That’s a lot of folks working on scaffolds potentially being exposed to a number of hazards such as falls, electrocutions, and falling objects.
Worker safety should always be the number one priority of every construction company. Safety meetings and toolbox talks should be conducted on a regular basis to educate workers on safe work practices and stay compliant with regulations regarding safety and training.