Construction accident prevention is key in reducing the number of workplace fatalities and injuries in the U.S. With 1 and 5 deaths occurring at construction sites, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) brings attention to particular hazards construction workers face known as the Fatal Four: falling, struck by accidents, electrocution, and caught in or between objects.
Of these four hazards, falls result in the most fatalities in a construction area, representing nearly 40 percent of annual deaths. Because of the risks, OSHA expects construction companies to do all that they can to protect employees from fall injuries, including the following requirements:
- Employees must be provided fall protection equipment, which may include safety nets, stairs and handrails, or safety harnesses and lines.
- Regular inspections should take place to ensure ladders and scaffolds are safe to use or taken out of circulation until they are up to OSHA standards.
- Open sided floors, holes, runways and platforms should be guarded by erecting a guard rails, toe boards or providing a cover to prevent falls to lower levels.
- To prevent falls, tools or other materials should be hoisted up after an employee has climbed a ladder or scaffold unless they are contained in a tool belt. It is safer to have two hands available to move to another level.
Falls in construction areas account for many injuries and fatalities every year despite OSHA guidelines so employers must be ever-vigilant to spot hazards in construction zones and to train workers on how to prevent accidents. Running a tight ship will reduce the number of fall injuries and fatalities.
Contact an Experienced Team of Iowa Construction Accident Lawyers
If you or a family member has been injured in construction accident, contact the Des Moines, Iowa workers’ compensation and personal injury lawyers of Stoltze & Stoltze PLC for immediate assistance today at 515-244-1473.