Construction is one of the most dangerous professions a person can pursue. Not only is there an omnipresent risk of injury, but hundreds of construction workers also lose their lives on the job every year across the country.
Many of these fatalities stem from the same risk factors according to data gathered and analyzed by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). While companies that perform construction work cannot predict freak gusts of wind or a car crash that topples over scaffolding, they can at least take steps to minimize the four biggest threats to their workers’ lives, also sometimes called the “fatal four.”
What are the fatal four risks for construction workers?
Construction workers make up about 20% of all annual workplace fatalities, and the majority of these deaths occur because of the fatal four. Of the 1,008 construction worker deaths on the job in 2018, the most recent year with analyzed statistics available, OSHA found that falls, caught-between accidents, electrocutions and getting struck by an object were responsible for almost 59% of the total construction work deaths.
Caught-between incidents may be the one item on this list that people don’t immediately understand. They are crushing accidents that can occur when items fall or when machinery or equipment crushes a worker against a wall or another piece of equipment. Most of these kinds of accidents are preventable with property safety gear, adequate training and adherence to OSHA’s rules for construction sites.
Compensation opportunities depend on the circumstances
You undoubtedly already realize that workers’ compensation is an option if you or a loved one suffer an injury while working at a construction job. The available benefits can cover medical costs and help replace lost wages.
What you may not realize is that in circumstances where the company didn’t comply with regulations regarding safety equipment, employee safety and job site maintenance, it is sometimes possible to bring a lawsuit against the company itself due to their negligence or wrongful acts in the event that they violated the law.
Talking about the circumstances that led to an injury or death on a construction site with an attorney can give you a better idea of what rights your family has in your specific scenario.