Injuries on Construction Sites
Construction sites are full of hazards. With dangerous machinery, heavy materials and vehicle present, they are a minefield for potential accidents to occur, especially with so many contractors, engineers and workers on site at any one time.
Employers have a duty to implement strict health and safety procedures to protect employees from harm (within practical reason). For construction sites, this would also include any visitors to the site and the general public’s safety.
Main Causes of Construction Site Accidents
Injuries that could occur on construction sites are:
- Broken bones
- Head injuries
- Manual handling injuries
- Crush injuries
- Electrical accident e.g. high voltage shock
These injuries may be caused by some of the following:
- Falls from height
- Slips and trips
- Being hit by falling objects
- Crane collapses
- Collisions or accidents involving vehicles or heavy machinery
- Using vibrating machinery
- Defective equipment
- Lack of suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Lack of training
- Inadequate site management
Many accidents are fortunately preventable. However, if the correct health and safety procedures are not implemented or followed, this can expose employees to unnecessary danger and have devastating consequences.
It should also be considered that construction sites do not just pose the risk of accidents but also of industrial illnesses such as hearing loss and vibration injuries, health conditions associated with hazardous substances and also asbestos poisoning.
An employee is expected to take a common sense approach to take care of themselves and anyone who may be affected by their actions. They should adhere to any warning signs and be aware of the potential hazards around them. Any training given should be adhered to including emergency procedures. Concerns regarding health and safety, especially anything which may cause immediate danger should be reported as soon as possible to the appropriate person or the danger removed immediately.
Employers are legally bound by the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992. This means they have a duty by law to provide a work environment which has regulations implemented to protect employee health and safety.
Other examples of legislation relating to construction sites are:
- Work at Height Regulations 2005
- Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER)
- Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992
1) Provide suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Suitable PPE should be provided and should be mandatory for all workers and visitors present on site and those doing specific tasks
- This includes head protection, safety footwear and hi visibility jackets
2) Ensure a safe site
- This involves robust planning and ensuring the safe organisation of a site
- Ensuring sites are kept in a clean and orderly condition
- Managing scaffolding and working at height
- Ensuring structural stability
- Safe supervision of cranes and safe systems of work
- Precautions against electrical accidents
- Fire safety planning and processes
- Appropriate planning and controls for mobile vehicles and machinery including separate traffic and pedestrian routes, clearly marked
- Correct management of the storage of materials and waste
3) Conduct risk assessments
- Regular risk assessments should be carried out to ensure risks are identified
- Risks should be eliminated as soon as possible or reduced to a safer level
- Scheduled risk assessments and inspections for aspects required by law such as scaffolding every 7 days
- Many hazards should be accompanied with warning signs
- Isolation of dangerous areas with signs indicating the danger of entry e.g. falling objects
- The right equipment should be used for the job at hand and not expose workers to unnecessary danger to cut costs or time
- Consider risks to the general public
4) Provide appropriate training
- Only those adequately trained to use machinery, heavy equipment and vehicles on site should do so
- All employees should receive adequate safety training and also adequate manual handling training
- Emergency procedures should be in place including rescue plans e.g. when working at height
- First aid equipment should be visible, available and a trained individual/s appointed to be the first aid representative/s. These names should be made available to the rest of the workforce.
Can I Make a Claim?
If you have suffered an injury in the last 3 years whilst working on a construction site and the accident wasn’t your fault, you may be eligible for compensation.
This will not only take into consideration the physical injury you have suffered but also the pain, emotional trauma, financial losses including a disadvantage on the labour market, moderations to your home, rehabilitation and any other ways your life has changed.
How Can Injury Lawyers UK Help?
We are a team of lawyers who have over 20 years of experience dealing with compensation claims against employers. We understand how stressful suffering an injury in the workplace can be and we, therefore, aim to take the hassle out of the legal process.
We guide you through the process using clear and plain English meaning you never have to feel confused by complicated legal jargon. We will guide you through each process step by step.
We always aim to get you the full amount of compensation you are entitled to so that you get the justice you deserve. We operate a no win, no fee policy meaning you do not owe us a fee unless we secure your compensation.
Contact us today to speak to one of our legal advisers. They will initially talk through your case and then advise regarding whether you could have a successful claim to be made. Just get in touch via one of the methods below.
Get in Touch
Call 0800 1123 156
Text “CONTACT” to 80011
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