Common Construction Site Accident Injuries – The rate of construction site injuries has drastically increased over the last few years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, roughly 150,000 construction site injuries happen each year.
Construction sites usually involve heavy equipment and are unstable in nature that increases the risk of construction site workers being injured from various accidents and falls. According to The Barnes Firm injury attorneys, construction sites are extremely dangerous places for workers and can cause devastating injuries.
Below is a list of a few common construction site accidents and injuries:
Falls from Great Heights
Falls are one of the most common injuries on construction sites as workers are at risk of being injured in falls from great heights. In 2016, 348 out of 991 (38%) construction site fatalities happened due to falls.
Construction site workers often get to use cranes and ladders to work off the ground on great heights, which increases their risk of falling and being injured. Fall injuries usually happen due to improper scaffolding, poor or no guard rails, and malfunctioning safety equipment. Falls from great heights can lead to major injuries like spinal cord injury, paralysis, broken bones, traumatic brain injury, and even death.
It’s crucial that workers use personal protective equipment (PPE) and proper fall protection such as scaffolds, railings, and barrier guards to protect from fall injuries.
Being Hit by Falling Objects
Workers are at great risk of being hit by equipment or objects that fall from above. Even small objects can result in severe injury if the fall is from a great height. For example, a tool falling several stories can lead to head wounds, spinal cord injury, trauma, other bodily harm, and even death.
Some of the common falls that can hit workers and cause injury include falling debris and materials, collapsing structures, moving or swinging equipment, and falling tools. Workers should wear PPE, including goggles and helmets to minimize the risk of being harmed by falling objects.
Exposed electrical wiring and flammable materials at the construction site increase the risk of electrical injuries or electrocution. Electrocution can lead to severe injuries or even the death of a construction site worker. Likewise, if leaky pipes or hazardous chemicals mix with exposed wires, it can lead to severe burns, head wounds, and dismemberment.
Employers should give workers proper training and instructions for handling hazardous chemicals and flammable materials to minimize the risk of electrical injuries and electrocution.
Heat Stroke and Frostbite
Since construction work requires intense physical labor, it can lead to overexertion-related injuries. For instance, construction projects happening on hot summer days with extreme sun heat may lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke. This usually happens when workers aren’t wearing proper gear or are dehydrated. Heatstroke can result in organ failure, brain damage, or even death in some instances.
Likewise, lack of proper gear when working on projects happening in winters can lead construction site workers to suffer from frostbite that can cause feelings of firmness and cold in the affected area. Prolonged exposure to cold temperatures can cause hypothermia, a condition where your body temperature drops and your body organs can’t function normally. Hypothermia can lead to complete failure of the heart and respiratory systems.
Injuries from Being Trapped Between Machinery and Equipment
Construction site workers often operate near heavy machinery, cranes, dump trucks, and other equipment on the construction site. Improper functioning or handling of the equipment can lead to serious accidents and injuries such as cuts, burns, and electrocution.
Workers are often caught and crushed between two or more objects or hit by a falling structure. To keep such accidents and injuries from happening, workers should be aware of their surroundings and should practice proper equipment handling. Moreover, don’t place yourself between an immovable object and equipment, and keep your hands away from moving objects. You should also avoid getting in the swing radius of a rotating object.
Trench or Building Collapses
Workers inside the construction site are at risk of being injured by the collapse of a trench and other excavations. A building that’s under construction often experiences unexpected or sudden collapses, hurting those inside. It can lead to severe injuries and even fatalities.
Other Construction Site Injuries
In addition to the injury causes mentioned above, construction site workers are often hurt due to getting hit by a vehicle, errors made by other workers, floor slips and falls, and more.
Workers meeting the construction site accidents sustain a range of injuries, including:
- Spinal cord injury
- Broken bones
- Head injury
- Eye injury
- Knee injury
- Brain injury
- Neck or shoulder injury
Some of these tragic injuries can even lead to organ failure, permanent disability, or fatality.