The construction industry employs thousands of people in Oklahoma. While construction and growth supports the economy and workers, construction zones are notoriously dangerous. Across the country, one in every 10 construction workers will face an injury at some point during the year. Construction workers face one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States and accidents occur at a shocking rate, despite safety regulations.
Falls account for most fatal construction site injuries
Falls are one of the “deadly four” for construction workers. According to Construction Research and Training, 39% of fatal construction falls are roof falls, 33% are scaffold falls, and 39% are falls from ladders.
The “fatal four” injuries account for 57% of fatal construction injuries
The fatal four injuries cause 57% of construction worker deaths in Oklahoma. These fatal four injuries include:
— Falls (39% of fatalities)
— Being struck by objects (10%)
– Electrocutions (9%)
— Being caught between objects (7%). This includes being compressed or caught in machinery or objects and being trapped or crushed in a collapsing structure or material.
If these fatal four could be eliminated, it would save the lives of 602 workers every year, according to OSHA.
Nearly 20% of work deaths are in the construction industry
Every year, about 4,500 to 5,500 people are killed in work-related accidents. The construction industry accounts for 19.5% of all work deaths in the United States. While construction has the highest number of deaths among all industries, workers in mining and oil/gas extraction; agriculture, forestry, and fishing; and workers in warehousing and transportation have higher death rates.
Workers in specialty trades have a higher risk of death
Among construction fatalities, workers in specialty trades like concrete and foundations account for 48% of fatalities. This is followed by heavy and civil engineering such as utilities and roads (17%), building workers like remodeling and home builders (16%), equipment workers such as plumbing and HVAC (12%), and building finishing workers doing flooring and insulation (7%).
Construction injuries usually involve the back, spine, and trunk
About 150,000 construction site accidents occur every year, many of which lead to devastating injuries. The most common construction site injuries hurt the spine, back, and trunk, potentially leaving construction workers unable to work for an extended period of time or facing permanent disability in addition to significant medical expenses.
OSHA safety violations lead to many construction accidents
You have the right to expect a safe workplace. Unfortunately, many workers are hurt or even killed due to violations of federal OSHA safety and health standards. The most common violations cited by OSHA include:
- Fall protection
- Hazard communication
- Scaffolding requirements
- Respiratory protection
- Control of hazardous energy
- Ladders in construction
- Machines and machine guarding
- Electrical system design
If you have been injured in a construction accident in Oklahoma, it’s important to consult with an experienced construction accident injury lawyer in Oklahoma City as soon as possible. There are many possible avenues for seeking compensation for your injuries and disability, including a workers’ compensation claim, a third-party lawsuit if the negligence of someone other than an employer or co-worker contributed to your accident, and a product liability case if faulty machinery, vehicles, or tools led to the accident.
Contact McQuire Law Firm today for a free consultation with an experienced Oklahoma City construction site injury attorney to discuss your case.