National Safety Stand-Down WeekMay 6, 2019
Falls are one of the leading causes of fatal injuries in the construction industry. To help raise awareness of the dangers of falls in construction, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) are providing a range of free resources to help employers prepare for the National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction campaign, which takes place the week of May 6 to 10. Falls can occur in several work environments, including on scaffolding, roofs, elevated surfaces, and ladders.
The Safety Stand-Down event gives employers the opportunity to talk to employees about a range of important topics, from fall hazards and fall prevention to protective safety gear and safety policies. It also gives employees the opportunity to talk to management about fall hazards they have seen while on the job. This allows employers and employees to share their perspectives with each another and identify areas where improvements can be made.
Anyone can participate in the Safety Stand-Down event, including commercial construction companies, highway construction companies, independent contractors, and safety equipment manufacturers. Regardless of the type of construction environment, employers are responsible for providing effective fall protection for all employees who are working on surfaces or equipment that is six feet or higher from the ground. This should include personal fall arrest systems, safety net systems, and guardrail systems. Statistics show that over half of workers who were fatally injured in a fall accident did not have access to personal fall arrest systems.
Statistics on Fatal Falls in Construction
According to NIOSH, the following statistics show how serious falls can be in the construction industry:
- In 2017, falls caused 366 out of the 971 total construction fatalities.
- Construction companies with 10 or less employees account for over 60 percent of all fatal falls.
- Workers over the age of 45 suffered the most fatal falls.
- Hispanic workers account for 39 percent of fatal falls, even though they represent only 29 percent of the construction workforce.
- Most falls occur in the southern part of the United States.
There are several ways that a construction company can conduct a Safety Stand-Down. For example, they can run toolbox talks focusing on a range of safety topics. They can also conduct safety equipment inspections, develop rescue plans, and discuss hazards that are specific to a job. Managers should implement stand-down programs that are most effective for their workplace. This will help ensure that the work environment is as safe as possible and that preventable fall injuries are avoided.
Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Victims of Fall Injuries
If you suffered a serious fall-related injury at work, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. We will determine whether there were any safety violations in the workplace and seek the maximum financial compensation you deserve for your injuries. We will not stop fighting for you until we have your complete satisfaction. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 844-556-4LAW (4529) or contact us online. Located in Baltimore, we serve clients throughout Maryland.