When you think about construction site accidents in California, the first thing that comes to mind is structure collapse. It is easy to understand why people relate this type of accident to construction sites. You might be surprised, however, to learn that the most common cause of death and serious injuries at a construction site is due to slips, trips, and falls.
Slips, trips, and falls – the overlooked cause of serious injuries
Construction sites are dangerous workplaces by nature. These sites have many people, materials, tools, and heavy equipment. One of five work-related deaths in the U.S. happens at a construction site. Over a third of construction site deaths result from a slip, trip, or fall. Slip and fall events account for over 31% of all non-fatal injuries at a construction site.
Common injuries associated with slip and fall accidents
Slip, trip, and fall accidents can result in serious injuries. Many of these injuries can be life-changing, leading to the injury victim becoming disabled. The reason that these events can cause such serious injuries is that the victim is caught unaware and cannot “brace for impact” like they would if they expected to fall. Some of the most common injuries in a slip, trip, and fall accident include:
- Injuries to ankles, knees, and hips
- Injuries to tailbone
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic head injuries
- Injuries to wrists, elbows, and shoulders, including rotator cuff
Construction site safety
Most slip, trip, and fall accidents occur at ground level at a construction site. Companies are encouraged to keep work areas organized and keep debris from being in walkways. Workers are always cautioned to use safety equipment while on site and to be aware of their surroundings.