Construction workers face the highest rate of work-related fatalities in our nation. According to OSHA 21% of worker fatalities in 2016 occurred in construction, with falls making up 64% of construction worker deaths.
Falls are one of the “Fatal Four” construction worker accidents, followed by being struck by an object, electrocution and getting caught in or between objects, falling structures or machinery.
Tips for Working Safe & Avoiding Falls
- Use equipment developed to prevent falls such as fall arrest systems, safety harnesses, lifelines, nets or guardrails.
- Make sure holes, gaps in flooring, skylights and similar hazards are covered or have access blocked off.
- Use the right equipment for the job and use it correctly. Learn how to use ladders, scaffolding and related equipment properly.
- Keep work areas well-lit and clutter-free.
- Ensure that a fall prevention and safety program is in place on your job site.
- Stow cables, hoses and wires up and away from areas where they might trip someone.
- Wear slip-resistant shoes and other work gear that’s made for protecting you and preventing falls and other injuries.
- Inspect safety equipment and work tools before each use. Let your worksite manager know immediately if anything is broken or not safe to use.
Injuries and fatalities on work sites are preventable and now, modern technology is making it easier to stay safe at work. Both construction workers and worksite managers can use new mobile apps to keep a worksite safe, get training on how to prevent a fall or other accidents and to track and report any safety issues.
By paying attention to your surroundings, working safely and using equipment correctly, you can save your life or that or a fellow worker.