Oklahoma workers may be interested in the results of a Nationwide analysis of workers' compensation claims from businesses involved in construction activities. It looked at more than 10,000 claims over a period of five years and found that over 30 percent were related to falls from heights. A fall from an elevated surface tends to cause more significant injuries compared to other types of accidents. These injuries could keep a person out of work for a longer period of time.
Construction company managers and workers in Oklahoma recognize the hazardous nature of their work. Numerous safety regulations aim to prevent injuries and deaths, but caught-in, caught-between and struck-by accidents continue to claim lives. Research from the Center for Construction Research and Training has determined that deaths arising from these types of accidents are increasing at a faster rate than construction fatalities overall.
An OSHA announcement has consequences for some Oklahoma construction companies and workers. OSHA put forth a certification requirement for crane operators in 2010 but then received two consecutive three-year extensions for the enforcement of this requirement. The most recent extension is the third in this series, giving OSHA until November 2018 to oversee the crane certification requirement and enforce compliance.
Although the risks of construction work may seem apparent -- after all, big equipment, scaffolding and heavy building materials may be involved -- there continue to be an unacceptable number of construction injuries each year.