Falls are the Number One Killer of Construction Workers in New York
The leading cause of death for construction workers is falls at the workplace. Recently, a construction worker at Three World Trade Center in New York City fell while installing a steel beam, sustaining head injuries and breaking both arms. A similar fall happened at Four World Trade Center in June when a worker fell five feet and was pierced by a piece of metal.
Fatal Fall Prevention in New York
The Occupational Health and Safety Administration launched a fall prevention campaign to help stem falling deaths in construction. OSHA reported that 264 of the 774 total construction worker fatalities resulted from falls. The campaign has three main focus areas:
- Providing the right equipment to workers
- Training workers to use the equipment properly and safely
Employers of construction workers must make detailed plans on what work needs to be done and how the work will be done. This includes safety planning. Employers should be asking questions about what types of hazards are present, what equipment is needed to alleviate these hazards and what costs that equipment will add to the project. This should be included in the cost of the job.
Provide Proper Equipment
Workers must always have the right equipment to safely perform the job. OSHA reports that workers that are at six feet above the lower level or more need protection from death or serious injury. Ladders and scaffolding change depending upon the type of job that needs to be done. For example, workers working on roofs need different types of safety equipment from those working on a second story. Safety equipment such as ladders and harnesses should be inspected regularly and should fit the individual worker properly.
Workers must be trained to use the safety equipment, otherwise it might be ineffective. Not only does this put workers at risk, but it wastes the company’s money. Workers must be trained in recognizing the job hazards as well as using the provided safety equipment. Employers should create a work environment where workers are encouraged to inform employers of safety risks and request proper safety equipment.
Some employers do not follow proper safety standards when they are putting together a project and fail to provide workers with necessary safety equipment. Falls are often preventable and workers should not have to die or suffer serious injuries because the employer did not properly plan or provide safety equipment.
If you have been injured in a fall at a construction site, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact a New York personal injury attorney who is knowledgeable about injured worker claims.