Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site: Every construction site is a changing environment. According to statistics, construction is the area with the highest rate of accidents at work, which is why we must know the Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site.

As a consequence of the construction environment, accidents on construction sites are more common than in other fields. However, regardless of the type of accident, it is common for people who are in the wrong place at the wrong time to be seriously injured.

The vast majority of workers in the construction sector are aware of these risks and dangers that are in their workplace and despite this, accidents continue. Work accidents can occur for various reasons. They can be caused by the negligence of the worker or by accidental events beyond the control of the worker and the company, as well as by unsafe conditions.

All jobs are exposed to an accident and this trend is increasing. This happens basically for 4 reasons: ignorance, little training, unsafe act and conditions and lack of awareness and involvement of both the company and the workers themselves. So it is necessary to know the Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site.

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site
Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site review

In this sense, the most common types of accidents in the construction sites are:

  • Biological accidents due to contact with bacteria, viruses or fungi.
  • Entrapment of clothing or body parts in the machinery.
  • Falls from various heights (ladders, chairs, ramps, etc.)
  • Falling objects.
  • Fall from height.
  • Collisions and impacts
  • Radiation exposure.
  • Electric shocks.
  • Contact with vapours or harmful products (chemical or toxic agents).
  • Burns from flames or contact with very hot surfaces.
  • Sudden postures or body movements.
  • Overloading or improper handling of heavy loads.

Construction sites are dangerous places to work; according to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), approximately 6.5 million workers work each day on some 252,000 job sites.

According to OSHA, 4,764 workers died on the job in 2020 (3.4 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers). Workers in transportation and material moving occupations and construction and extraction occupations accounted for nearly half of all fatal occupational injuries (47.4 per cent), representing 1,282 and 976 workplace deaths, respectively.

Types of Injuries in Construction Site Accidents

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

  • Cuts and lacerations.
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • Broken bones.
  • Serious brain injuries.
  • Damage to muscles and joints, due to excessive work and being overweight.
  • Death (in which case the next of kin can claim compensation for homicide).
  • Paralysis
  • Hearing loss from noise exposure.
  • Loss of sight or eye injuries.
  • Burns
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (usually affects people who have witnessed a partner’s accident).

Common causes of construction accidents

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

On a construction site, the probability that a worker is the victim of an accident at work can be increased by various factors. Anyone can be the victim of an accident at work. However, being forewarned is very useful, having the information can prevent more accidents from happening.  Based on my experience in the construction field, I have identified the most common causes of workplace accidents are:

Taking shortcuts

The worker tends to look for and take shortcuts that save time. There is nothing wrong with it. However, at work, and especially when working with dangerous machinery, working at heights or deadly chemicals, you expose yourself to the enormous danger that can cause serious injury, disability or death. In other words, shortcuts taken at work aren’t shortcuts, they are mistakes that increase the risk of injury or, worse, death.

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site
Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Starting a task without the necessary information

You must have all the pertinent information related to the task to be performed. Those who start a job with only part of the information, or instructions, are essentially doing the job blindly. It is tremendously dangerous.

Bypass safety procedures

Deliberately neglecting established workplace safety procedures not only puts you in direct danger but also endangers those around you. The safety procedures that are followed, just sometimes, don’t work either. Following safety procedures is part of your job.

Mental distractions

Everyone has a life outside of work with problems and distractions, but it should not affect the work. If you are dwelling on your problems at work, you will be less aware of your surroundings, you will work less safely and you will also be less productive.

Nothing and no one is infallible, we all make mistakes, but by being aware of the most common risks and causes of accidents at work we can avoid them. Youth often brings impulsive, reckless, and even dangerous behaviours. The unfortunate thing is that these behaviours can end in tragedy. We continually hear news of workplace accidents that result in disability or death.

We cannot forget the effect of social networks. Young people live through them and are constantly connected, or broadcasting their lives live, which favours fatal distractions. They are unpredictable and also believe they are invincible. It is evident that it is part of their growth and maturation process, but it makes them a danger to others and themselves.

Distraction is one of the most common causes of construction accidents, which is why workers must pay full attention to the activities they carry out and avoid any type of interruption with electronic equipment that is not necessary for their work. So it is necessary to know the Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site.

Being an overconfidence

“I’ve been doing it like this for years and nothing has happened to me” is the classic response when someone’s attention is called to a construction site, from the worker to the construction resident and even the “big boss”.

“It was just for a little while”, is another typical response when asked: why aren’t they working anchored with their harnesses or why did they take off their helmets when they are on-site? Accidents happen in a fraction of a second and it is going to happen at that moment that you did not comply with the safety regulations.

Unsafe working conditions

  • Environmental conditions present a clear and present hazard.
  • Defective design or construction.
  • Inadequate or defective protective equipment.
  • Lack of safety personnel.
  • Defective tools or assemblies.
  • Inadequate lighting in the workplace.
  • Lack of ventilation in the workplace.

Unsafe acts

The violation of a method considered safe, that is, human negligence is the first element of insecurity. Examples:

  • Adopting an unsafe posture or position.
  • Distract or alarm other people.
  • Not using the correct speed.
  • Not using proper PPE.
  • Carrying out unauthorized acts.
  • Carrying out maintenance work with the machine running.
  • Use of damaged tools.

Workers without experience and training

When carrying out construction projects, it is essential to have employees who have expertise in the construction area, employers must also provide them with training regarding the procedures and machines used by the company.

Faulty equipment

The equipment must be in good condition and must be periodically maintained to repair failures. Workers must trust that the equipment they use on job sites is working properly to promote a workplace free from hassle and injury. Typically, this equipment tends to be large, with many moving components, and any failure can cause potentially life-changing injuries in a catastrophic way.

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site
Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

There are many reasons why construction accidents happen. However, faulty equipment is one of the most common reasons. These defects may have arisen during the manufacturing process or from a lack of required maintenance.


Workers’ rest hours must be respected. Long working hours can cause employee fatigue and lack of concentration on work activities. Fatigue is related to 20-30% of traffic accidents. Its main cause is driving without rest for too long. In addition, there are many variables in the environment, the vehicle and, especially, the driver, which can favour its appearance or enhance its effects.

If you do a task for too long, sooner or later there will come a time when your performance will start to decline and you will not be able to continue with it effectively.

how to prevent accident at construction site

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

After knowing the cause of accidents in construction sites, it is important to take the appropriate measures to avoid risks in construction. Why prevention of accidents at work is important? Why it is necessary to know the Cause and prevention of accidents at the construction site.

Although the answer to this question may be quite obvious, I think it is necessary to highlight all the benefits that arise from So the Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site. And is that articulating effective preventive measures, not only protects the health and safety of workers but also:

  • The number of casualties is reduced.
  • Improve labour productivity.
  • Reduce the costs associated with sick leave.
  • There are fewer stoppages in the company’s production processes.
  • Liabilities attributable to the company are avoided.
  • Costs related to Accident Insurance policies are reduced.

5 Phases to reduce accidents in the company

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Having these 5 phases covered, you will reduce accidents by optimizing your resources (in addition to preventing and minimizing the risk factor).

  1. The first phase involves carrying out preventive auditing of your company that captures the current situation in which it is located and determining and implementing the necessary preventive and/or corrective measures.
  2. Then, make your workers perceive the risk to which they are exposed and train them as necessary so that they are aware of how to carry out their work safely.
  3. In the third phase, you must establish policies and good preventive practices among your employees.
  4. Once all of the above is done, create channels that promote fluid and active preventive communication between all the teams in your company.
  5. And finally, invest in technology and standards to effectively integrate prevention into your company’s management system.

Next, you will learn the best way to effectively reduce occupational risks:


All workers, both old and new, must receive regular and thorough training. The team must keep in touch and be aware of the safety regulations and risks in construction. Workers should not use the equipment if they are not qualified to do so. Workers must receive training before starting work, otherwise, they may suffer an accident or be penalized. Due to training workers understand the Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site.

Daily toolbox talk

They should be held regularly, sometimes daily, depending on the risk and the magnitude of the task. These safety toolbox meetings should be short and focused, discussing all relevant hazards and risks that need to be considered on-site. And also discussing the Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site during toolbox talks.

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Personal protective equipment

Personal protective equipment is essential to the safety of construction workers and must be worn at all times. Personal protective equipment for creative workers includes several measures such as high visibility clothing, hard hats, gloves, stability shoes, and hearing protection.

Everyone must wear safety glasses. Wear the appropriate protective equipment for the task and ensure that the glove material is suitable for the task. Many accidents are caused by falling heavy objects. Therefore, make sure that you are wearing the right footwear.


To maintain safety and effectiveness, our workplaces must be properly maintained. Keeping the workplace clean and free of debris will reduce the risk of injury and prevent workplace accidents. Always make sure tools are stowed away and aisles clear when you’re done. Make sure the materials are properly stacked and got barricaded.

All contaminated materials must be disposed of in a suitable place. Uniforms must be cleaned when leaving or entering the workplace to remove particles and bacteria. Compliance with these standards helps protect workers so they can perform their jobs safely and work in a safe and healthy environment.

Hazard identification and risk evaluation

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Before starting work, the area must be inspected and any potential hazards reported. This will help assess risks more accurately. Remember to continually increase precautions to avoid and reduce risks in construction. Must be hazards are identified through job safety analysis or risk assessment.

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site
Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Preparation of action

Once the risks have been identified, you must adopt all the necessary preventive measures that manage to curb the risk of suffering an accident at work. By way of example, you can equip all those spaces that need elements for the prevention of these risks. Depending on the sector, the equipment will be different: ergonomic chairs for offices, helmets for head protection and/or gloves for hand safety etc.

And attention! Keep in mind that trips, falls and slips are the first cause of accidents at work. Pay attention to the maintenance of your company’s facilities.

Worker consultation

Employers must consult their employees to improve their occupational health and safety. The prevention delegates and the Occupational Health and Safety Committees are in charge of guaranteeing that this process is carried out effectively.

In each workplace, workers must select their delegates who will represent them within the Occupational Health and Safety Committees. Consultation with employees is important to always be able to improve working conditions and also helps to avoid possible accidents in the workplace.

Start applying above mentioned keys to avoid accidents at work

Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Employees are people, and as such, they are susceptible to errors (like everyone else). Teach them how to make their workplace a safe place and provide them with the necessary tools to make it so.

Now it’s your turn to act! Take into account each of the keys and decide what steps you should take in each of them. Start immediately to improve the safety levels of your company. And remember… “Without action, there is no prevention”.


Cause and prevention of accidents at construction site

Regularly check the safety of the place, especially after inclement weather. Install railings, platforms, nets, etc. to prevent people and objects from falling. If necessary, install collective protection against falls (railings, gap covers, safety nets).

Risk assessment is the basis of effective health and safety management and a key factor in reducing accidents and occupational diseases. A well-conducted risk assessment can improve working conditions, the work environment and overall company performance.

To avoid accidents on construction sites, it is necessary to ensure that precautions are taken, that safety regulations are known and that protective equipment is available. We hope that by knowing the cause of accidents and preventive measures at work, you will share them with your colleagues and on social networks so that your work is safer.

If you liked the post and you want me to talk about another preventive topic, leave me a comment.



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