The four areas in which construction injuries are most common are falls, “struck-by” accidents, electrocutions and accidents in which workers are caught between or in machinery.
These are often referred to as the Fatal Four. They take many lives every year, and they largely contribute to why construction is seen as so dangerous. Even those who survive these types of accidents are often severely injured.
Struck-by accidents, in particular, carry some additional risks, and they can be very hard to avoid. Why is this?
The injured worker may not have been involved
The problem is that the worker who gets injured when they’re struck by an item that has been dropped or that is flying through the air may have had nothing to do with the task that caused that to occur.
For instance, a worker could simply be walking along the lot on a construction site when someone above them drops a power tool. They have no idea that they’re at risk, and they did not do anything to cause the accident themselves, so it’s hard for them to either predict the incident or avoid it.
The same could be said for items that are flying after being propelled by heavy machinery. Maybe one worker is standing and looking at a chart on the wall while another is using a table saw, but the board binds, and the saw throws it across the room. That worker who was standing by the wall has no idea what has happened until they’re struck by the board, and there’s nothing that they can do to prevent those types of injuries.
Serious injuries are always a risk in construction work. Those who are injured need to know about all of their legal options.