Falls still the most common cause of death in construction

| Oct 18, 2016 | Workers' Compensation |

Louisiana construction workers are in one of the country’s most dangerous occupations. In 2014, one out of every five fatal workplace accidents occurred in the construction industry. While the number of annual work-related deaths in the U.S. has declined significantly over the past few decades, the leading cause of construction deaths has remained the same for a long time.

According to a report from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, fall protection citations continue to top the list of the most common health and safety citations that are issued to construction employers. There were over 20,000 serious construction-related falls reported over the last four years, and falls are still the most common cause of construction-related fatalities.

OSHA commonly issues citations to construction industry employers for problems related to guardrails, scaffolds and portable ladders. In 2014, OSHA cited employers for fall-related violations in 359 of the 899 construction-related deaths. The second most common reason construction employers are handed OSHA citations is lack of training. OSHA commonly cites construction employers for lack of training on fall protection strategies. Failure to provide workers with appropriate eye, face and head protection is another common reason for OSHA citations.

A fall at a construction site can be a very serious accident that may result in hospitalization. Construction workers who have been injured in a fall may have broken bones, spinal cord injuries and head injuries that can leave them with temporary or permanent disabilities. An attorney might help a worker in this situation to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits that can include medical care and partial wage replacement.