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What percentage of fatal accidents happen in construction?

You know that construction has a reputation for being the most dangerous industry since it leads to the most worker deaths every year. That does not mean the highest fatality rate, but, owing to the massive size of the industry, simply the highest totals at the end of the year.

This is true in most years, but do you know what percentage of fatal accidents this industry encompasses? It changes from year to year, naturally, but a quick look at recent statistics shows that about one out of every five workers who lose their lives on the job do so while working in construction.

Specifically, those stats come from the 2018 totals released by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. That year, 4,779 workers lost their lives while working in the private industry sector. A full 1,008 of them were construction workers. When you run the numbers, that comes to 21.1%, which is actually slightly higher than one out of every five workers.

We can’t dismiss these high totals just because of the size of the industry. They still show that the risks are far higher than they should be and that many steps need to be taken to keep workers safe. Examples include providing them with proper safety gear, looking into new safety innovations and technology, offering training on new safety tactics every year and creating an overall culture of safety within the workplace — something that the construction industry often lacks.

Even doing this will not eliminate all fatal accidents, though, and families who have lost loved ones need to know what rights they have.

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