Don't Fall for Carelessness: Falls are Top Cause of Construction Deaths

December 12, 2014

It’s no secret that construction work can be dangerous.

From the heavy machinery being run on jobsites to the weighty materials often involved to the back-breaking labor put in, the construction field is no playground. But workers on jobsites can become complacent over time as they get used to dodging holes in the ground or having beams fly over their heads.

As comfort and familiarity with the work increases, however, caution and alertness tend to fade, leading to lapses in safety precautions such as personal protective equipment and physical barriers on jobsites.  Near misses increase, which leads to actual incidents that cause injury, work stoppage, or even death.

And the leading cause of death in the construction industry is perhaps the most avoidable. Falls account for one-third of on-the-job injury deaths in construction. There were 294 total fatalities in 2013 (284 falls to lower level), and more than 10,000 construction workers are seriously injured by falls every year in the United States, according to OSHA and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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