The construction industry is known for being highly dangerous. Construction site accidents account for a large percentage of work-related deaths, including fatal injuries from hoist equipment mishandling.
In 2018, construction-related jobs accounted for 47% of worker deaths according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. These jobs include construction, transportation, and material moving. These numbers do not even include the number of construction workers who suffer non-fatal injuries on the job annually. These frightening numbers show just how high-risk a construction site is as a workplace.
What Makes the Construction Industry Hazardous?
Construction sites have heavy and hazardous building materials, tools, and heavy machinery like construction hoist equipment on the field. If anyone mishandles any of these things, people will get hurt or die.
The number of construction workers who end up with severe or fatal injuries is consistently high every year. Considering how dangerous a construction site is, even a minor incident can result in broken legs or fractured ribs.
As mentioned previously, a construction site is filled with a lot of potentially dangerous items. For instance, if someone inexperienced handles construction hoist equipment and makes a mistake– they can accidentally run someone over or drop heavy building materials over their colleagues. This reason is why it is important to have a certified operator on the site.
One of your options is to rent your heavy machinery from reliable service providers. For example, United Hoist offers eco-friendly and duty-efficient hoists along with a certified operator. Having an expert operator on the team can reduce accidents involving heavy machinery like construction hoist equipment and lifts.
Construction Hoist Equipment Mishandling and Other Common Causes of Accidents in the Construction Industry
Here are some of the most common construction site accidents:
Fatal Falls from High Heights or Scaffolding
Construction workers are no strangers to working in high places. For instance, they need to be on scaffoldings, ladders, windows, and roofs. One small misstep can result in a severe or even fatal injury.
Slipping or Falling on Site
Other than high places, there are other hazardous circumstances where a construction worker can slip or fall which can cause great pain or fatal injuries. For example, there could be stray tools and materials on the floor, uneven ground, and even holes around the area!
Construction workers can slip and accidentally hit their heads or fall into a deep hole.
Electrocution from Exposed Electrical Systems
Construction sites are a work in progress so exposed wirings, power lines, and unfinished electrical systems are expected in the area. Coming in contact with these could shock or electrocute workers if they are not careful.
Falling Heavy Objects or Debris
Projects with multiple levels are dangerous due to falling tools, materials, and debris. Beams can even strike workers on the lower levels of the project.
Getting Stuck or Caught In Between Objects, Machines, or Materials
There are many heavy materials and machinery involved in construction. Construction workers can find themselves stuck in between machinery, immovable objects, and even debris from the project.
Fires and Explosions on Site
As mentioned previously, construction sites work in progress. Aside from exposed electrical wirings, construction workers also need to be mindful of unfinished piping and leaking gases. These items can cause fires and explosions which would result in quite a massive construction site accident.
Exhaustion Due to Working Conditions
Not all accidents involve external items, sometimes it is exhaustion from working. Construction workers have long hours and they often have to work during extremely hot or humid conditions.
Overexerting can be dangerous. On top of that, construction workers can fall victim to heatstroke in hot weather.
Mishandling of Construction Machinery and Tools
Construction sites can have a number of heavy machinery for a project. There could be cranes, bulldozers, construction hoists, and lifts on the field. As mentioned previously, people can mishandle machinery such as hoist equipment, which will result in an accident. Even smaller tools like nail guns can cause an accident due to human error.
Many construction sites are located near roads or highways. Drivers can be distracted for one moment or it could be too dark in the area— vehicles can end up hitting a worker or even crashing into the site.
Trenches are deep, narrow excavations used for foundations of buildings, retaining walls and dams, and construction of tunnels. These are a necessity on construction sites. However, they can collapse while workers are inside. The workers can be buried by surrounding dirt, hit with tools or machinery– all of which can cause fatal injuries.
With All This In Mind
It can be said with certainty that the construction industry is truly an extremely risky sector. Fortunately, more and more ways are available to avoid accidents and fatal injuries on site. Some companies have started creating better personal protective equipment for construction workers and some manufacturers add extra safety features to their machinery and tools.
Although disasters and misfortunes cannot be avoided completely, construction companies should do what they can to protect their people, while construction workers should be cautious at work to protect themselves, particularly from hoist equipment-related accidents.