Construction sites are full of inherent health and safety hazards. The nature of construction involves many dangerous elements, including power tools, heavy machinery and working from heights. As a construction worker or pedestrian passing through a construction zone in Kansas City, you could be at risk of suffering many different types of injuries. Construction industry statistics show that some accidents and personal injuries happen more often than others.
Seek counsel from a Kansas City construction accident lawyer if you are a construction worker or nonworker involved in a serious construction. The construction company, equipment manufacturer or another party could owe you compensation for your related damages.
Head and Brain Injuries
The most common type of construction site accident is falling, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Falls took 338 construction workers’ lives in 2018 alone. One serious injury that can arise during a fall is a traumatic brain injury. Striking one’s head on the ground, a piece of equipment or another item in a fall could fracture the skull and cause serious brain injuries. A traumatic brain injury such as a concussion could cause long-lasting effects, including brain fog and memory loss.
Traumatic brain injuries can also arise from the second most common type of construction site accident: struck-by object. Over 11% of all construction worker fatalities in the U.S. stem from objects striking victims. Many of these deaths occur due to critical brain injuries after an object struck the worker in the skull. Falling bricks, building materials, debris, power tools, scaffolds, structures or cranes can strike workers and cause life-changing brain damage. While wearing a safety helmet at a construction site can reduce the risk of a serious head injury, workers are still vulnerable.
Falls, acts of violence, transportation accidents and getting caught in equipment (four common construction site accidents) can all lead to bone fractures. Broken bones anywhere in the body could force a victim out of work for weeks or months during the healing process. Some victims may be able to return to work in limited capacities, while others may suffer full disabilities until their bones mend. Broken bones in important parts of the body, such as the spinal cord, could cause permanent disabilities.
Fractures to the skull or spine can lead to lifelong injuries such as traumatic brain damage or paralysis. An injured worker or bystander may never fully recover from a bad fracture in these areas after a construction site accident. Severe bone breaks, including compound fractures and the need for medical amputations, can also occur in crush incidents. A paver drum roller driving over a construction worker’s leg, for example, may break the bones into so many pieces that the leg is unsalvageable. Broken bones are serious injuries that could entitle the injured victim to significant compensation.
The third most common cause of construction worker death in the U.S. is electrocution. Electrocutions and nonfatal electric shocks can be extremely painful for a worker, who can suffer severe electric burns on any part of the body. Electrocutions can happen on a construction site due to lack of proper hazard communication and the negligent control of hazardous electrical energy. Poor worker training, for example, could lead to an employee driving a loader beneath a live power line, resulting in significant electrocution hazards.
Puncture Wounds and Lacerations
Soft-tissue injuries such as cuts, scrapes, deeper lacerations and puncture wounds can arise from handling dangerous power tools without proper care. A puncture wound could occur from an accident involving a nail gun, for example. These injuries can be painful and cause a temporary disability for the injured person. They may also create permanent scars or physical disfigurement. Learning how to safely use power tools and wearing the proper safety gear can help prevent these accidents.