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The fatal 4 accident types in the construction industry

On Behalf of | Aug 2, 2017 | Blog

Construction work is a perilous occupation. Ensuring that structures and work spaces are stable and safe can be very difficult to do. Still, construction companies have a duty to provide workers with the tools and training that are conducive to safe practices.

There are four types of accidents dubbed as the fatal four by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Loved ones left behind after one of these fatal accidents might choose to seek compensation for the unexpected and tragic death. These are the four types of accidents that cause the most deaths each year.


Falls are a frightful problem in the construction industry. Often, these falls occur from heights that are at least one story above grade. As you can imagine, these falls can lead to very serious injuries or even death. All told, falls account for around 38 percent of all construction worker fatalities.

Employers can prevent falls by providing workers with safe ways of working at these heights. Using harnesses is one of the steps that they can take. When scaffolding is used, it should be inspected prior to each shift to ensure that it is suitable for use. Any fall prevention equipment, ladders, scaffolding and similar objects should be taken out of service if they aren’t in good shape.

Struck by object accidents

Struck by accidents come in second place for the number of fatal construction site issues. These accidents account for just shy of 10 percent of construction worker fatalities. These can be caused by an object falling on the worker.

Requiring hardhat usage in a construction zone can help to prevent these accidents from leading to fatal brain injuries. Other safety measures might include using safety netting to prevent objects at heights from falling on people below.


Construction sites are often the home to temporary electricity solutions, such as temporary wiring or generators. These can pose a safety hazard for workers if proper steps, such as lock out/tag out, aren’t used. Electrocutions account for just over eight percent of fatal construction accidents.

Caught between incidents

The final of the fatal four is the caught in or between accident. These account for just over seven percent of fatal accidents at the construction site. Often, workers who suffer this type of injury are crushed between objects. One example is a worker who is crushed between a piece of heavy equipment and a wall.

These accidents could likely be prevented with proper spotting techniques when there is any type of heavy machinery in use. Audible alarms and brightly colored safety vests might also help to prevent these accidents.