Fatal Construction Accidents
Although there is a healthy demand for construction workers, construction accident death tolls are rapidly rising. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OHSA), there are approximately 100 construction worker deaths reported each year. Roughly 18.5 percent of work-related deaths occur in the construction industry.
California was not excluded from these findings as reports showed that the Los Angeles-Long Beach area was among one of the highest in the United States for fatal construction accidents at records of 81 worksite deaths.
It is almost always the construction industry that ranks as the most dangerous field to work in. Therefore, unsafe work environments and negligence often result in a tragic death. Even though no fortune can resurrect the life of a loved one, filing a lawsuit can help with the recovery of both economic and non-economic damages sustained.
It seems that almost every year the number of construction site deaths reported increases. It is apparent that accidents are bound to happen, with a field of danger that includes the operation of heavy machinery and highly specialized equipment, being suspended in extreme heights or working with electricity. Nevertheless, most construction site accidents can be prevented.
The health and safety of a worker are said to be no longer a priority for construction companies. When aiming to complete a project, profit is usually the number one priority. Thus, construction workers are at risk of sustaining fatal injuries from using faulty equipment, falling from an extreme height, or working on unstable work areas.
The loss of life in a construction death is tragic. This is why it is especially critical for employers to adhere to the OHSA standards and provide a safe workplace by conducting frequent inspections of the sites, providing job safety training and regular supervision.
Types of Fatal Construction Accidents
Some of the most common causes of fatal construction accidents include:
- Falls from extreme height (including falls from a ladder)
- Malfunctioning or failure of specialized machinery
- Collapsing of walls or roofs
- Collapsing of Scaffold
- Negligent supervision and training
- Crane accidents
- Floor holes
Construction Death Statistics
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 17 percent of all fatal work injuries reported in 2014 involved contractors.
The OHSA described the leading cause of worker deaths in construction sites to be falls, followed by electrocution, struck by an object, and caught-in/between.
They characterized these causes as the “fatal four,” for the reason that they were responsible for 58% of construction worker deaths in 2014. The BLS further stated that to save 508 worker lives each year. The fatal four must be eliminated.
Further statistics showed:
Roughly 4,383 construction workers died in a work site accident last year
- 544 workers were killed in a fatal accident
- 233 workers were killed by falling objects
- 138 deaths were reported in the oil and gas industry. A record high
- 70 deaths of roofers were reported last year. Reported to be the highest count in the last five years.
Construction Fall Accidents
A fall is one of the most common accidents at construction sites. Therefore, roughly one-third of construction deaths are attributed to falls.
However, it is not so uncommon to relate the cause of a construction accident to a fall. Most construction sites are covered in debris, multiple level structures or scaffolds, and sometimes uneven surfaces that therefore increase the risk of a fall.
Construction fall accidents can result in tragic injury to a worker. They can range from death to permanent disability. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide a safe work environment as per the OHSA standards. Failure to do so may result in a lawsuit for damages sustained in a construction fall accident.
Some of the most common factors that contribute to a construction worker killed on the jobsite:
- Unprotected ledges or sides of buildings
- Uncovered holes or wall openings
- Unsecured or poorly set up ladders
- Poorly maintained scaffolds
- Exposed wires or concrete
Fatal Construction Accident Lawyer
It is unfortunate that most construction workers and their families believe that Workers’ compensation laws prevent injured workers from filing a lawsuit. These laws vary in every state. In most cases, there are ways to avoid restriction of laws in worker’s compensation. Construction accident lawsuits can be complicated. In the state of California, there is a comparative negligence law. Which means that the liability is spread around to include all possible parties.
Let our highly experienced lawyers assist you in finding the liable parties for the tragic accident of you or your loved one you may be able to receive more economic refunds than that of supplied by worker’s compensation.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a fatal construction accident or sustained injuries through a construction site fall, contact our investigating now for a free case evaluation.