The Center for Construction Research and Training has released a report indicating that the rate of fatal construction injuries to workers in California and across the country rose considerably over a ten-year period. The CPWR examined data gathered as part of the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries to make a number of findings related to construction accidents. The data covered the years from 2011 to 2020, during which time, the research reported, there were an average of 963 fatal injuries annually to construction or extraction workers.
Data shows construction work dangers increased
The 2011 statistics showed that construction worker fatalities occurred at a rate of 9 per 100,000 full-time workers. By 2020, the figure had increased to 10 per 100,000 full-time workers, according to the CPWR report. Hispanic workers were at the greatest increased risk for fatal construction accidents, with 9.6 per 100,000 Hispanic workers killed in 2011, compared to 12.6 per 100,000 in 2020. That represents a 31.3% increase. Fatality rates for construction workers under the age of 55 also increased sharply, from 8.1 per 100,000 in 2011 to 9.0 per 100,000 in 2020.
Roofers at highest risk
The CPWR report indicated that the highest risk of fatal injury in 2020 was among roofers, for whom the fatality rate was 47 per 100,000 full-time workers. The next most dangerous construction job titles were helpers, for whom the fatality rate was 43.3 per 100,000 full-time workers, and structural steel and iron workers, with a fatality rate of 32.5 per 100,000 in 2020.
Nonfatal injuries also prevalent
The study also examined nonfatal construction accident injuries and found that they occurred at a rate of 78,000 injuries to private construction workers each year. Slips, trips and falls were the most common cause of injuries, with an average of 22,900 such injuries occurring annually between 2018 and 2020. Building materials were also cited as a major cause of nonfatal construction injuries, being responsible for 15,900 annual injuries, on average, between 2018 and 2020.