The Central Penn Business Journal has reported that a man involved in a construction accident that occurred in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania was fatally injured after falling into the bottom of a 15-foot deep trench at a construction site. The crews extracted the 52-year-old owner of Halteman Construction in Bethel Township at the site at Triple-M-Farms in South Lebanon Township, according to police.
The man died as a result of multiple traumatic injuries from the fatal fall. The coroner believes the worker died after he was helping dig a hole for a silo and is ruling it as an accidental death.
Although tragic, fatal falls are not uncommon in the construction industry. In fact, construction accidents at large happen at an alarming rate when compared to other lines of labor. The Center for Construction Research and Training (CCRT) reported in its Construction Chart Book that falls are the number one cause of fatal injuries at construction sites. According to the CCRT, overall fatalities declined in 2010, but falls still accounted for 267 deaths, making up one-third of all fatal injuries. Between 1992 and 2010, there were 6,858 deaths related to construction site falls, or around 360 deaths annually.
Between 2008 and 2010, the largest number of fatal fall accidents due to falls at construction sites was recorded at 579 among Specialty Trade Contractors alone. While that is a higher number, a large proportion of deaths in Residential Building Construction were contributed to falls (135 deaths), which accounted for 48.7 percent of all construction related fatalities in that sector. Notably, these two sectors are primarily smaller companies, typically boasting only one to 10 employees overall. However, less than 30 percent of construction workers are employed by such establishments, making these numbers disproportionately high for the number of fatalities.
Construction Workers Most at Risk
The size of a company is not the only factor that can greatly impact the likelihood of a worker becoming fatally injured. Older construction workers, for example, have a much higher rate of fatal falls than construction employees of younger demographics. Statistically, Hispanic construction workers, and especially those born outside of the United States, have a notably higher risk for a fatal fall. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, along with other partners, have launched a national campaign for construction fall prevention in response to these alarming fatal injury rates. The campaign aims to encourage everyone in the construction industry to work safely and to have proper safety equipment and protocols to reduce falls in general, and especially reduce the number of fatalities.
Philadelphia Construction Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Urge Construction Workers to Adhere to Proper Work Safety Procedures
While it is not possible to avoid each and every construction accident, the number of injuries and fatalities can be reduced by working safer and adhering to all safety procedures. However, accidents do still happen. If you have been injured in a construction accident, our team of Philadelphia construction accident lawyers at DiTomaso Law can help. Contact us online or call 215-426-4493 today to schedule a free consultation at our conveniently located Center City Philadelphia offices to discuss the unique circumstances of your case and learn how our team can help you through the process.