According to a report by the Center for Construction Research and Training, approximately 800 construction workers, lost their lives between 2011 and 2015 due to struck-by incidents. These include situations in which workers are hit by equipment, objects or vehicles. The CPWR reported that 48 percent of fatalities involved vehicle accidents, and that 57 percent of those cases occurred in designated work zones.
Highway workers had the highest instances of struck-by fatalities, according to the CPWR. Struck-by incidents have been a focus of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration as well as other regulatory bodies. The Focus Four Initiative, administered by OSHA, concentrates on organizing resources and training for the most common construction accidents.
Among the most common kinds of accidents impacting construction workers, in addition to struck-by incidents, are caught-ins and caught-betweens, electrocution hazards and falls. OSHA has paid particular attention to falls in recent years, as they are the leading cause of fatalities among construction workers. OSHA has complied with a mandate to increase rates by raising the maximum civil penalty under safety and health regulations. OSHA has also decreased the frequency with which it issues press releases about egregious safety violations since President Trump took office.
In a case where a worker has been injured on the job, an attorney can often explain the options that are available, including filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits under the employer’s insurance coverage. The acceptance of these benefits preclude a lawsuit against the employer. However, if the accident was caused by a non-employer third party, such as a motorist speeding through a work zone and hitting the injured worker, in some cases a separate lawsuit might be possible.