Construction Workers in Pennsylvania Operate in Hazardous Conditions with a Risk of Severe Injuries
Although Pennsylvania ranks sixth in population, it has the third highest rate of workplace injuries.
Construction workers in PA have a high risk of severe injuries, since their job is highly hazardous. Figures published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal that in 2015, the state reported 35 fatalities due to construction accidents.
The “Fatal Four” Construction Accidents
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has posted about four types of accidents that cause more than half of all construction worker deaths in the US every year:
- Falls from ladders, roofs, scaffolding, and cranes: 38.8 percent
- Struck by objects such as tools, construction material, debris, and other falling objects: 9.6 percent
- Electrocutions from mishandled/defective equipment: 8.6 percent
- Getting caught between or in the construction equipment (including, run over, backed over, pinned, or crushed): 7.2 percent
OSHA has estimated that focusing on eliminating these Fatal Four hazards would have prevented the deaths of 602 construction workers in 2015. As the highest number of construction worker deaths occurred due to falls, protection from falls was the most important standard cited by OSHA.
While all the safety rules and regulations are in place to prevent such constructions accidents, employers often do not strictly follow them in Pennsylvania.
Construction Accidents in PA Involving Falls
It is common for construction workers to climb a ladder or work at significant heights. This creates a high risk of falls. Falling from a very high platform can lead to serious injuries or even death. Collapse of scaffolding is one of the major causes of construction-related falls.
Construction Accidents in PA Involving Building/Trench Collapse
During the process of construction or demolition of a building or trench, an unexpected collapse or caving-in may occur, causing critical injuries to the workers entrapped in the falling rubble.
Construction Accidents in PA Involving Bulldozers
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics statistics, in 2010, fatalities related to construction sites involving bulldozers were as high as 774 or 18.4 percent of all construction work-related fatalities. The accidents included rollovers, getting trapped, crushing incidents, and run-over.
Devastating Construction Site Fires in PA
Flammable chemicals, leaking pipes, exposed wiring, and defective equipment are common hazards at construction sites. These can give rise to quick fires that spread rapidly, thereby trapping construction workers, and causing catastrophic injuries and sometimes even death.
Construction Accidents in PA Involving Electricity
Electrical accidents are another major cause of worker injuries, including burns and internal injuries. Every year, around 200 construction workers are killed due to electrocution. If a worker happens to be on a raised platform when electrocution occurs, they could fall, resulting in a serious injury or death of the worker.
Get in Touch with a Workers’ Comp Attorney in PA
If a construction worker in Pennsylvania gets hurt while they are engaged in construction job activity, they are entitled to receive worker’s compensation. This can help them recover their medical costs and lost wages. The workers’ compensation laws in PA are complex, and it is best to choose a competent attorney for effective legal representation.