Construction workers in California can face a range of hazards every day on the job that put their lives, health and well-being at risk. In 2016 alone, almost 1,000 workers were killed in fatal construction accidents at their worksites. Only 6 percent of the population works in the construction industry, but over 20 percent of workers in the private sector who lost their lives at work was part of the industry. However, according to research, over 60 percent of those deaths were preventable. There are several workplace safety issues that contribute to the dangers that construction workers face on a daily basis.
Falls are the cause of a third of the construction industry deaths and even more serious workplace accidents and injuries each year. Workers may not have the proper protective equipment. They may have to work on unstable surfaces, and scaffolding and ladders may not protect them. There are safety standards that govern the use of ladders and scaffolds, and these regulations must be followed in order to avoid dangerous threats to workplace safety. In addition, workers operating more than 6 feet above the ground should have additional preventive equipment like restraints or nets.
In addition, workers are often severely or fatally injured by other objects from vehicles and equipment to construction materials. In order to protect workers' safety, construction sites should include clear paths for vehicles. Proper training is also essential to ensure that cranes and forklifts do not injure other workers. Construction sites often contain other hazardous materials from silica dust to chemicals that can affect workers' ability to breathe. Toxic exposure can be devastating to people's health.
When people are involved in construction accidents, they may sustain injuries that hinder their ability to go back to work and support their families. A workers' compensation lawyer can help injured employees protect their rights and pursue the compensation that they deserve.