In Australia there are thousands of construction projects underway that vary in size and scale. Although we have organisations such as Safe Work Australia keeping us informed about safety and compliance, those within the industry physically carrying out construction work, must remain aware and vigilant in maintaining the highest degree of safety for themselves and their co-workers.
In such a variable environment with so many phases of operation to consider, construction workers are either working with or in the vicinity of large equipment.
Whether they are tractors, trucks, cranes or vehicles, the combination of moving people and moving machines has by and large worked cohesively without time lost on a project or significant safety incidents occurring.
The vast majority of construction sites and companies do their best or adhere to safe work policies and procedures throughout the cycle of construction. Yet in some cases injuries and fatalities still occur.
According to Safe Work Australia here are some key statistics relating to injuries and fatalities:
Compiled in 2015, the most common work-related injuries experienced by workers in the construction industry were:
- cuts and open wounds (31%)
- sprains and strains (21%)
- chronic joint or muscle conditions (16%).
These injuries were mainly due to:
- hitting or being hit by an object (31%)
- lifting, pushing or pulling objects (30%)
- falls from a height (15%)
In relation to fatalities, between 2003–13, 401 workers died on construction sites in Australia. The majority of those (28% or 112 workers) involved falls from a height:
- 40 involved ladders, mobile ramps, stairways and scaffolding
- 32 involved a fall from a roof
- 17 involved buildings under construction or demolition.
Other fatalities during this period were made up of:
- vehicle collisions 16% (65)
- electrocution 15% (61)
- being hit by a moving object 12% (48)
- being hit by a falling object 11% (46)
- being trapped between or in equipment 8% (31)
We have a clear picture with these statistics that worker safety is not something that can be treated with any measure of complacency. Many initiatives are undertaken within Australian construction companies to keep their workers safe on site via training and information sessions.
Companies at the forefront of safety in the workplace are always seeking new solutions to assist them in maintaining the safest environment possible.
If you have any questions about safety systems or what technology can offer today in relation to evacuation or nurse call scenarios get in touch.