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What are the “Fatal Four” Causes of Construction Site Accidents?

Working in construction is dangerous. In fact, it is so dangerous that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) tracks the 10 most common causes of construction-related injuries and deaths each year. Among these common causes, four stand out as being especially prevalent, and OSHA has dubbed them the “Fatal Four.” Unfortunately, our Denver accident lawyers know these safety hazards all too well, as we regularly represent injured construction workers and their families.

According to OSHA, more than 20 percent of all work-related deaths occur in construction. Of these, nearly 60 percent result from the Fatal Four.

The Leading Causes of Serious Injury and Death on Construction Sites

While specific accident figures vary from year to year, the most common causes of serious and fatal construction site accidents have consistently remained the same. They are:

  • Falls
  • Being struck by objects
  • Electrocutions
  • Being caught in, between, or under machinery, moving objects or material

1. Falls

Approximately one out of every four construction site deaths results from a fall. This includes falls from roofs, scaffolding, ladders, and unprotected heights (i.e. open floors without temporary guardrails). Despite detailed requirements for providing construction workers with adequate safety equipment and fall protection, serious and fatal falls continue to be far too common on construction sites in Denver and other cities.

2. Being Struck by Objects

Being struck by falling and moving objects accounts for nearly 10 percent of construction site fatalities. This includes being struck on the head by falling tools and materials, as well as being struck by forklifts, trucks and other vehicles. As with the other types of accidents included within the Fatal Four, when these accidents aren’t fatal, they often leave construction workers with severe injuries and life-altering disabilities.

3. Electrocutions

Electrocutions are entirely preventable. Yet, they account for an untold number of serious and fatal construction-related accidents every year. Common safety failures that result in electrocutions on construction sites include failure to follow appropriate lockout/tag-out procedures, exposed and faulty wiring, and workers being forced to work in close proximity to dangerous electrical currents.

4. Being Caught In, Between or Under Machinery, Moving Objects or Material

Accidents involving power tools and heavy machinery, accidents involving forklifts and other vehicles, and dumping accidents are to blame for approximately one out of every 20 construction-related deaths in Colorado and throughout the United States each year. Once again, despite there being ways to prevent these accidents, and despite construction companies being legally required to take steps to prevent them, they remain a top risk for construction workers in all trades.

Have you been injured or lost a loved one on a construction site in Denver? If so, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation, and we encourage you to contact us promptly for more information.

Contact the Denver Accident Lawyers at Levine Law

We provide experienced legal representation for construction workers and families in the Denver area. If you have questions and would like to speak with one of our Denver accident lawyers in confidence, please call 303-333-8000 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.

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