Construction workers in Texas and elsewhere are often injured in falls from scaffolds, roofs and ladders. In fact, the majority of such falls (86%, 81% and 57% respectively) occur in the construction industry. Falls, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, are the leading cause of death in the industry. They are behind an average of 310 deaths and 10,350 serious injuries every year.
OSHA has stated that there were 1,000 construction deaths in 2016. Moreover, 60 percent of the deaths were preventable. Construction workers in Texas should be familiar with the five leading causes of death in the construction industry: they are falls, struck-by incidents, electrical accidents, caught-in-between incidents and exposure to hazardous materials.
Texas construction workers should be aware that, on June 20, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced its proposal to extend the crane certification requirement enforcement date to Nov. 10, 2018. Additionally, the existing employer duty to ensure that crane operators are properly trained will also have a proposed extension to the same date.
When someone is injured at a construction site, several different parties may hold liability for the injury. Especially when the construction project is a large one, many people may be involved in it, including the site owner, contractors, engineers and suppliers, among others.
Many Texas construction workers are seriously injured while they are framing and erecting walls. The risk is especially great when the building being constructed is one with multiple stories. The federal government provides laws that require the use of certain types of fall protection when workers are building walls.
A worker from Texas was killed at a concrete plant near Marietta, Georgia, when he fell inside a concrete silo on Feb. 16. The accident happened at approximately 3:05 p.m., according to a statement released by the Cobb County Department of Public Safety.
Construction workers in Texas and around the country are more likely to be killed or injured in electrical accidents than workers in any other industry. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Electrical Safety Foundation International show that 52 percent of those killed in such accidents between 1992 and 2010 worked in construction. This was four times the death rate of professional and business services workers who were the group with the second highest number of electrical fatalities.
Summers in El Paso are hot. Sure, it’s a dry heat. You try standing on an road surface as hot asphalt is being laid or pouring hot tar on a roofing project when the air temperature is already in the upper 90s or above 100 degrees. It's a dry heat, but then again, so is your oven.
For construction workers here in Texas, falls are always a concern. Falls are always dangerous because of gravity, which causes a worker to accelerate the further they fall. In addition, workers injured in falls often suffer catastrophic and deadly injuries because they often have little control as they fall, often striking the ground or other objects with their head and neck.