Injuries are an unfortunate part of the workplace, and that’s why the state requires workers’ compensation insurance to help those who have been injured on the job.
Fatalities are also an unfortunate part of the construction industry, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has listed its “Fatal Four” injuries.
The ‘Fatal Four’
In 2017, there were 4,674 fatalities among workers in private industry, of which one in five were in construction. Excluding highway collisions, OSHA’s “Fatal Four” construction accidents were:
- Falls – 39.2 percent
- Struck by objects – 8.2 percent
- Electrocution – 7.3 percent
- Caught in or between an object – 5.1 percent
These four causes led to more than half (582) of the construction deaths in the country.
Fatal falls account for most deaths
Drawing from another source, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that while the total number of deaths among workers in the U.S. was down in 2017, the number of fatal falls was at the highest level in the 26-year history of the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI). The report found 887 worker deaths from fatal falls.
Other findings from the CFOI report:
- Unintentional overdoses from non-medical drugs while at work increase 25 percent from 2016 to 2017, the fifth year in a row that unintentional workplace overdose deaths were on the rise
- The transportation and material movers group accounted for 47 percent of worker deaths in 2017. The number of tractor-trailer truck driver deaths – 840 – was the highest since 2003
- There were 258 fatalities among farmers, ranchers and agricultural managers, 103 involving a farm tractor. Of the 258, 63 percent involved people on the job who were 65 years old and older.
- A total of 27 states saw fewer workplace fatalities while 21 had more – California and Maine had the same number.
Worker injuries and fatalities are an unfortunate part of the work environment. If you or a loved one is injured on the job, find out what your options are by contacting a qualified, experienced attorney.