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Jerome, Gibson, Stewart, Stevenson, Engle & Runbeck, P.C.Helping injured workers in Arizona since 1973

How do you prevent falls at construction sites?

Workers in Arizona are well aware that some occupations are inherently dangerous. Those employed in jobs that pose risks to their well-being should understand ways to enhance safety in the workplace in an effort to prevent workplace injuries. Employers should take certain steps to increase safety by providing up-to-date training and safety equipment. When accidents do occur in the workplace, employers should implement preventative measures to avoid similar incidents from occurring again, such as falls at construction sites.

How do you prevent falls at construction sites? Because almost all construction sites have unprotected sides and edges, wall openings and holes in the floor during the construction process, railings and warning signs should be put in place to prevent injuries and falls. If these steps are not taken, workers could be injured from a fall or a falling object.

First, a mechanism should be used when employees are exposed to a height of six feet or more above a lower level. Whether it is a guardrail, safety net or personal fall arrest system, at least one of these should be used to guard a fall.

Next, as holes are created, they should be guarded or covered. If a cover is used on holes, they should be constructed with a material that could support two times the weight of the employees, materials and equipment that the cover could be exposed to.

Lastly, before work is initiated each day, a survey or audit of the site should be conducted to note any potential hazards. During this process, the usage and effectiveness of any safety mechanisms and fall protection systems should be surveyed and approved as well.

Although these steps could help avoid and prevent falls at a construction site, construction accidents could still happen. Falls at a construction site could result in serious injuries, causing the worker to be out of work while they recover. Injured workers should be aware of their rights and benefits, such as workers' compensation, so that they do not face financial difficulties during while they are trying to recover their health. Workers' compensation could help them cover the medical bills, lost wages and other damages caused by the workplace accident.

It is important that employees understand their remedies when they are hurt on-the-job. Obtaining compensation for their losses and damages caused by a workplace accident could help them recover properly and return to work in a healthy condition.

Source: United States Department of Labor, "Falls: Unprotected Sides, Wall Openings, and Floor Holes," accessed on Dec. 1, 2014

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Jerome, Gibson, Stewart, Stevenson, Engle & Runbeck, P.C., provides experienced representation for workers' compensation cases in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa, Gilbert, Glendale, Peoria, Avondale, Casa Grande, Flagstaff, Prescott, Tucson and Yuma, and throughout Maricopa County, Pima County, Pinal County and Yavapai County, and all of Arizona.

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