Every day, New York workers accept the risks that come with job sites and these risks are particularly high for those who work in the construction industry. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, on any given day there are 252,000 construction sites across the country that employ close to 6.5 million people.

Because of the high number of projects and the nature of the work, fatalities are higher in the construction industry than in all other categories. Common hazards at construction sites include the following:

  • Trench collapse
  • Falls from heights
  • Electric shock
  • Repetitive motion injuries
  • Scaffold collapse
  • Lack of or failure to wear personal protective equipment

Contractors and construction managers are required to meet certain safety standards to protect their employees, and workers can go one step farther to protect themselves. If you work in a construction zone, you should always be aware of any low clearances, obstructions or other obstacles in your surroundings. Know your comprehensive safety program plan, understand it and follow it closely. You should also wear any protective clothing you have been given whenever you are on the site to avoid injury.

One other way to stay safe is to only use tools and machines for the things they are designed for. Do not try to improvise when you are not sure how the machine will react or if its been used for something similar before. Never yank a cord out of an electrical plug. Workers can also avoid repetitive motion and chronic injuries by balancing tools correctly against the body and maintaining good posture while working.

This is for educational purposes and should not be interpreted as legal advice.