The construction industry is one of the industries that have the highest number of workplace injuries.
These accidents, which are often known but hard to control in large construction sites, include electrocution, falls from roofs, injuries caused by falling debris, explosions, fire-related accidents, among others.
What causes these accidents?
Construction accidents are caused by many factors among them the collapse of buildings under construction, falling debris, exposure to high voltage wires, workers failure to use protective gear, falls from ladders that are not secured properly, faulty equipment, explosions, lack of proper worker training and carelessness when using heavy equipment such as cranes and forklifts.
What can be done to prevent these accidents?
Most accidents that happen in construction sites could have been avoided if the general contractor and all subcontractors had a moral and economic commitment to create a safe construction site.
To prevent site accidents, contractors must do the following:
1.) Use the right quality and quantity of materials for their projects. Study shows that 95 per cent of buildings that collapse are built using sub-standard building materials.
2.) Hire employees (including architects and engineers) that have a record of being careful in observing construction safety policy.
3.) Give workers proper protective gear such as gloves and hard hats as well as supplying well equipped First Aid kits.
4.) Ensure that all workers are professionally trained particularly those operating machinery.
5.) Ensure that all construction equipment are well maintained and serviced.
6.) Formulate and enforce site safety measures (e.g. protective gear, proper use of heavy equipment, etc).
7.) Conduct frequent inspection of sites to ensure compliance with safety measures.