Our society has made countless advances in recent years and many of those changes have made our lives safer. Still, there are some careers that remain hazardous by their very nature. Construction is one field in which workers daily risk their safety, but is it really necessary?
Carelessness Leads to Injuries
Why are construction sites so dangerous? According to Nehora Law Firm, it is often because of reckless behavior or negligence. Construction workers face tight deadlines and very often work on a shoestring budget, tempting the crew to cut corners. Very often, those budget cuts involve creating greater safety risks on the site. Meanwhile, workers in the construction industry are just like workers in every other field. They want to leave work early to make an appointment on time or they want to finish a project before the lunch break. All of these factors create a greater risk of accidents on the site and boost the likelihood of a serious injury.
High Turnover Rates
Employees don’t stick around for long in the construction industry. There are legitimate reasons for this. As a project ends, members of that crew will be looking for their next paying gig. That may mean working with a new crew. As a result, not every construction worker is properly schooled in safety procedures. They may just get the very basic concepts passed on to them, before they’re assigned their first task. For this reason, safety training is kept at the minimum required by OSHA mandates. Instead, construction companies should be providing enhanced training that could greatly reduce worksite injuries.
The Cost of Safety Designs
Today, we actually possess the ability to design buildings that can ensure the safety of the builders, while also meeting the desires and specifications of the clients. Why isn’t this done? Largely because designers fear civil litigation, if they add a safety feature, such as fall anchors, and a construction worker is seriously injured or killed while using that feature. The solution may be in Design-Build firms, which are companies that both design their buildings and construct them with their own crews.
Subcontracting Poses a Safety Risk
Many construction companies subcontract their work out to other contractors and those contractors may also subcontract starting a cycle of diverting accident liability. As the work falls upon smaller construction crews with minimal safety training and high demand for results, the likelihood of accidents and injuries are further increased. In recent years, the construction industry has begun to implement procedures to qualify all subcontractors on safety protocols. This is one way in which they hope to increase safety awareness on every site and reduce the possibility of worksite injuries and deaths.
Low Bid Contracting
Similar to subcontracting, the practice of awarding construction jobs to the lowest bidder has resulted in poor results. Often, the structure is built to substandard measures and the job is accomplished in spite of frequent accidents and injuries. Many states are taking the lead on forcing change upon the construction industry. By establishing requirements for “responsible bidding,” the lowball bid doesn’t always get the job. Instead, safety requirements must be met and the construction bidder must meet workforce training and safety standards. While there are many problems interfering with worksite safety in the construction industry, change is coming. Individual