Construction is one of the most dangerous industries in which to work. If you work in this field in Illinois, it is important that you are aware of the most common types of hazards. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration took the most common hazards and grouped them together to form the fatal four.
The fatal four include electrocutions, falls, caught in or between and struck by object. These four accidents cause over half of the deaths in the construction industry. They are something you and your employer should constantly be aware of and watching out for. You and your employer also need to follow all regulations put in place to protect you from these hazards.
The most fatal of the four hazards according to 2018 data is falls followed by struck by object, electrocutions and caught in or between. It is important to note that the statistics do not include accidents for highway workers in construction when discussing the fatal four. Highway accident deaths are another area of concern that lead to needless deaths every year.
It is probably not surprising that one of the top OSHA citations issued was for fall protection in the construction industry. Other top citations were for scaffolding, which relates to falls, and training for fall protection. It is clear to see that following safety guidelines could help reduce the number of fatal four accidents, especially falls. With proper safety training and implementation of safety standards, the industry could avoid an estimated 591 deaths.
Despite the fact that serious construction accidents still take too many lives, OSHA regulations have done a lot to improve safety within the field. When looking at the overall job market, OSHA’s impact has been to save lives with a drop to 14 worker deaths per day in 2017 from 38 in 1970. It just requires everyone to work together to make the workplace safer, which starts with understanding the risks of the fatal four.