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Construction workers: beware of 'the fatal four'

Working in the construction industry requires people to take on considerable physical challenges on a daily basis. Further, they must be mentally prepared and equipped to handle the responsibilities of acting safely and within established regulations. Unfortunately, even the most physically and mentally fit workers can fall victim to a serious construction accident.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, in 2014, more than 20 percent of occupational deaths involved a construction worker. In this post we will look at the top four types of accidents that result in construction worker death, or what are referred to as "the fatal four."

  1. Falling accidents: These could include a worker falling off a structure or being struck by a falling object. Falls were cited as the cause of nearly 40 percent of all construction worker deaths in 2014.
  2. Electrocution: There can be numerous electrocution hazards on any job site. Any time a person is working with or around electricity, there is the potential for that person to get shocked or burned, and there is a very real risk of explosions and fires. More than 8 percent of construction worker fatalities were linked to electrocution.
  3. Being struck by an object: Despite the protective gear that workers wear and the many precautions taken to keep people safe, there are still times when a worker gets hit by an object. Sadly, 8.4 percent of construction deaths stem from a person being hit by something.
  4. Getting caught in or between objects: There is a very real potential for getting trapped on a construction site. People can get stuck in places they cannot escape from and be crushed or otherwise hurt. These accidents might involve powerful machinery, shifting earth or the moving or setting of heavy materials.

These four types of accidents can happen on just about any construction site, so it can be crucial that workers are aware of them.

If an accident does occur and injure or kill a construction worker, there are ways for victims and their families to recover damages that have been suffered. While compensation and accountability cannot undo an accident or replace a loved one, they can help people cope with the aftermath of an accident and make it a little easier to move forward.

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