Construction work is dangerous, and many construction workers, foremen, and property owners know this. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulates the industry for safety, establishes best safety practices for construction sites, and collects data about accidents and injuries in construction areas.

OSHA considers these “Fatal Four” types of workplace accidents the most common that construction workers face daily: falls, being struck by objects, being caught in or between objects, and electrocution. We’re taking a closer look at how each accident is caused and how workers can protect themselves. 

Unfortunately, though, these injuries may happen to you, and when they do, a construction accident lawyer can also protect you legally.  

OSHA’s Fatal Four Construction Hazards

The site foreman ensures that all workers and visitors wear appropriate protective gear and that unsafe areas or live wires are properly sectioned off or indicated. 

It’s also the responsibility of each worker to pay close attention while working and follow safety regulations to protect themselves and others. Negligence and recklessness can cause serious, often fatal accidents.

1. Falls

Falling from a height is a very real risk for construction workers. Building structures dozens of feet in the air carries an inherent risk. It’s the responsibility of the construction company to provide safe, functioning, and secure harnesses, scaffolding, and other safety equipment to protect you in case you slip while working above the ground. 

This equipment should be regularly inspected for damage or wear that can make it unsafe, but it’s always best to examine your equipment before your feet leave the ground.

If you are working from a height with others, always use clear communication if you are moving around or behind someone to prevent accidentally knocking them over.

2. Struck-By Accidents

Struck-by accidents are just what they sound like – an object hits someone. This object could be a swinging beam or post or a falling object from scaffolding hitting a person below. Flying debris or flying objects, such as concrete from jackhammering or a misplaced nail from a nail gun, would also be a struck-by accident.

Your hard hat is the best protection from a concussion or traumatic brain injury from a struck-by accident. If you’re working above the ground, ensure that all of your equipment and tools are secured and safely placed on your scaffolding. 

Don’t try to rig your own “equipment holder” to hold supplies, and use caution when moving around, so you don’t knock anything off.

3. Caught-Between Accidents

These types of accidents may be among the most terrifying at a construction site. They occur when a worker is caught between two objects, and crushing injuries or involuntary amputations can result. 

Operating heavy equipment, from compressors to forklifts, may carry a caught-between danger. All heavy equipment should have an emergency stop that needs to be inspected and tested regularly to ensure it works.

Always ensure that you have no loose clothing or gear that could catch on an object and pin you. If you are caught between objects or witness someone else caught, stop any machinery and wait for emergency services to arrive. They know how to extract people to minimize any nerve or spine damage.

4. Electrocution

Electrocution can happen if wires are lying about, unprotected, or equipment is faulty. All electrical equipment needs to be regularly cleaned and inspected. If you are working near exposed wiring, always assume it’s hot – never touch it. 

If you are working on the wiring, place appropriate safety warnings around your work area to warn others. Always check your electrical equipment cords before plugging them in, and take caution not to overload outlets.

Protect Yourself from the Fatal Four Work Hazards With Caution

If you’re hurt on a construction site in an accident you didn’t cause, you may have legal options to pursue a claim for compensation for your injuries and pain and suffering. A construction accident injury lawyer can help.

Contact Our Construction Accident Law Firm in New York City

If you’ve been injured in an accident in Manhattan, NY, and need legal help, contact our New York City construction accident lawyers at Rosenbaum Personal Injury Lawyers to schedule a free consultation.

Rosenbaum Personal Injury Lawyers
100 Wall St 15th Floor
New York, NY 10005
(212) 514-5007