Health and safety in construction

Certified HSE Level 3 Officer

Health and safety in construction is one aspect of safety that cannot be pushed aside because of the high accident rates recorded in construction sites all over the world. The construction industry has been seen as one of the most hazardous industry with high fatality rate. Some of the major causes of accidents in the construction industry are: Fall from height, struck by moving machinery, trapped by rotating wheel, electric shock/Electrocution, cave in by excavation, suffocation in confined space, slip, trip and fall, etc.


Based on statistics:

The construction industry is responsible for about 20-30% of all known serious occupational injuries and, most probably, at least an equivalent share of occupational illnesses.

Poor construction safety and associated fatal and non-fatal occupational injuries have been reported in many studies from around the world. It is however hard to obtain accurate figures due to unregistered employees and unregistered accidents. According to Eurostat figures, more than one in four (26.1%) fatal accidents at work in the EU-27 in 2009 was recorded in the construction sector, while the manufacturing sector had the next highest share (16.1%). In the UK, the rate of fatal injury per 100,000 construction workers was 1.9 in 2012/2013 (compared with a five year average of 2.3). Although it accounts for only about 5% of the workers in the UK, it accounts for 27% of fatal accidents and 10% of reported serious accidents. In the USA, the construction industry accounts for 11.1 deaths per 100,000 workers (compared with 4.2 deaths per 100,000 workers in all industries). 

According to the European Working Conditions Survey 2010, workers in the construction sector feel that their health and safety is at risk. EWCS data show that 43.7% agrees with this statement and 41.2% feels that their health is negatively affected by their work. These percentages are much higher than for all sectors and also higher than for industry. Statistics Source


In order to curtail these accidents, regulatory bodies like OSHA and the Health and Safety Executive in the UK has drawn out regulations/Laws in which if followed religiously can help reduce the accident rate recorded in the construction industry.

Here are some construction health and safety regulations:

As stated earlier, the above regulation is to guide in managing health and safety in construction.

At this point, I will refer you to my previous article on “Construction Safety” to see the “20 Invaluable Construction safety precautions”


You can also read:

Confine space entry procedures that works

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