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Common construction site hazards to avoid - williamkropachs
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11 Apr 2017 | William J. Kropach | Construction Workers' Accidents

American workplaces have become safer, with the number of workers killed on the job declining steadily over the past four decades. This is because of the high safety standards that have created safer jobs. However, this does not apply to every industry.

The construction industry has continued to record an increase in the number of fatal injuries among construction workers.While the construction industry is not the most dangerous in the country, there are some measures that both employers and employees can take to ensure better safety.

Factors that have led to the increase

The factors that have resulted in an increase in construction accidents over the past few years can be divided into four major categories:

  • Falls – this is the leading cause of deaths in the construction industry. Since construction works require workers to climb to great heights, necessary measures should be taken to prevent falls.
  • Electrical accidents – electricity is regularly mishandled, a factor that may have led many people to underestimate the dangers that it poses. Electrical accidents at a construction site can result in serious injuries or fatalities.
  • Heavy equipment – contact between workers and cranes, trucks or other heavy equipment may result in serious accidents. Unstable walls and falling objects have also been found to be leading contributors to the high number of accidents.
  • Other hazards – there are other hazards at construction sites that may result in injuries and fatalities. Some of these hazards include inadequate oxygen in closed spaces, drowning, toxic fumes, and contact with underground lines.

What employers should do to keep workers safe

With the common causes of accidents in mind, there are several steps that employers should take to enhance safety at construction sites. Employers should ensure that all the people who visit the site where the necessary protective gear. Also, they should ensure safe trenches and excavation sites, ensure that scaffolding is properly erected and maintained, regularly checking the site to make sure that the area is safe and free from hazards as well as regular inspection of all tools and equipment used at the site. It is an employer’s duty to prevent hazards in the workplace, and when accidents happen due to their negligence, they can be held accountable.

Safety tips for construction workers

Workers at a construction site also have a responsibility to ensure that they are safe as they carry out their work. The first step that every worker should take would be to familiarize themselves with the potential fall hazards. Workers can also take every precaution to ensure that unnecessary fires are prevented. Also, all workers should remain vigilant with electricity, underground lines, and equipment. Even with the precautionary measures, it would still be important to have a First Aid kit at the site as well as emergency service numbers in case someone sustains serious injuries.

Construction sites can be hazardous. It is important for workers and their employers to be aware of these hazards so they can all take steps to prevent accidents.

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