How Dangerous is my my Jobsite?

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If you work on a construction site, you know it is dangerous. The following are some of the most common hazards found on job sites in New York.

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How Dangerous Is My Job Site?

If you work on a construction site, you know it is dangerous. The following are some of the most common hazards found on job sites in New York:

Roofing Scaffolding Ladders Cranes Falling Objects


A roof's height and pitch, or slant, and its uneven surface can make working on a roof highly dangerous. Falls from roofs comprise up to one-third of all fall-related deaths in the construction industry, according to


Scaffolds are constructed to reach high levels on a job site. This increases the risk if a worker falls. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that 65 percent of the construction industry works on scaffolds. In a recent study, 72 percent of workers injured in scaffold accidents said planking or a support gave way, or else they slipped or were struck by a falling object.


Workers risk falling if ladders are not safely positioned each time they are used. Falls are the leading cause of work-related injuries and deaths in construction. About 81 percent of fall injuries that send a construction worker to the emergency room involve a ladder, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and OSHA report.


A crane can cause deadly injuries if it drops the heavy materials it is hoisting, or if the crane collapses. Workers below a crane may be hurt, and a crane operator may be injured if a crane collapses.

Falling Objects

When tools and materials are handled improperly from elevated areas, they can drop and fall on people below. Construction workers are at risk from falling objects when they are beneath cranes, scaffolds or anywhere where overhead work is being performed. Injuries from falling objects can range from minor abrasions to concussions, blindness or death, according to OSHA.

Fires / Explosions

Buildings that are under construction or undergoing renovation or demolition are greater fire and fire injury risks. Construction sites have many sources of combustion (fire or explosion). In open structures, especially at heights, wind can fan fire and make it grow and spread rapidly. There are about 36 fire and explosion deaths per year in the construction industry, according to the Center for Construction Research and Training (CCRT).

Excavation / Trenches

Excavation and trenching are among the most hazardous construction operations. If a trench or other type of excavation collapses, workers who are in them can be crushed and/or smothered. Trench collapses lead to three worker deaths a month, on average, in the U.S., the CCRT reports.


Using hand tools or vibrating power tools over and over every day can cause injury to a construction worker's hand, wrist or arm. The CCRT notes that repeated gripping and twisting can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome, trigger finger, white finger, tendonitis and other painful problems. Power tools can also malfunction and throw parts, nails, wood slivers or other debris that strikes a worker and causes injury, as OSHA points out.

Electrical Equipment

Workers around electrical equipment run the risk of electrical burns, shock or electrocution (death). Many electrical burns and shocks occur because of loosened or exposed wires on extension and flexible cords, OSHA notes. Additionally, OSHA reports that using improper cords can also lead to burn, shock or electrocution. Faulty electrical equipment can cause fire or ignite an explosive mixture of material in the air.

Motor Vehicles

Workers at a construction site can be struck by trucks or other vehicles, pinned between vehicles and walls or crushed beneath overturned vehicles, according to OSHA. Workers who drive vehicles on construction sites also get hurt in wrecks. In one recent year, OSHA reports, more than 70 workers died from vehicles backing over them.

Fires Excavation / Trenches Tools Electrical Equipment Motor Vehicles