The Occupational Health and Safety Administration takes a special interest in falls that injure workers at construction sites. As we’ve seen in recent weeks on our Syracuse workers’ compensation law blog, there are a number of reasons why falls from roofs, scaffolds or ladders warrant greater attention in the community, including the severity of injuries and the complexity of a claim for compensation.
In connection with a number of federal partners, OSHA conducts an annual campaign it calls the National Safety Stand-Down to prevent falls in construction. The 2015 Safety Stand-Down took place earlier this month. Employers are encouraged and provided with resources to hold events at their job sites in which they discuss fall prevention and related safety issues directly with workers. These events also serve as an opportunity for OSHA to compile and share fall accident statistics, which may also prove interesting to our Syracuse readers.
In 2013, 828 construction workers lost their lives in construction site accidents. The main cause was falls from elevation, representing 291 fatalities. In breaking out the fall fatality numbers by state and territory, New York and California witnessed 13 deaths. Texas had the most, at 27 deaths, with Florida second at 18 fatalities. Virginia saw 10 deaths from falls; other states and territories were all in the single digits.
OSHA emphasizes that these were all preventable deaths. The National Safety Stand-Down website offers a number of downloadable safety resources for workers. Injury victims may also consider reaching out to a legal professional with questions about how to obtain compensation for their losses.