Don’t Fall Through the Cracks | Top Four Construction Hazards

Falls, Struck-By Hazards, Caught-In/Between Hazards and Electrocutions account for about 90% of all construction fatalities. Below are some ways to help prevent these hazards on the job:


  • Ladders and scaffolds should always be used in a safe manner.
  • Fall arrest equipment should be worn and used.
  • Floor openings need to be covered, labeled and secured.
  • Perimeter protection should be installed and maintained.

Struck-By Hazards include being hit by flying objects, falling materials, or vehicles and heavy equipment.

  • Bright, reflective or high visibility clothing should be worn near equipment and vehicles.
  • Don’t get yourself into tight spots between moving and fixed objects.
  • Never assume that equipment operators can see you. Keep a safe distance away from equipment and their loads, and ensure you know where the equipment is at all times.
  • Stay out of reach from backhoes and other extending equipment.
  • Inspect equipment to ensure it is maintained in safe working condition.
  • Use safety equipment to prevent objects from falling from heights.
  • Barricade unsafe areas to keep workers out.

Caught-In/Between Hazards are when employees have the potential to be caught in, pinned, crushed or buried by equipment or various work situations.

  • Don’t enter unprotected trenches or excavations, if adequate protective systems are not in place.
  • Trenches and excavations need the protection of sloping, benching, shoring, or trench shield systems. Workers also need a means to escape.
  • Install machine guards on moving equipment parts.
  • Inspect equipment and work materials prior to use to ensure they are in good working order.
  • Ensure only trained and authorized persons are in the work area.


  • Find and identify the utilities in the area before beginning work.
  • Keep aware of the power lines when equipment is in use and keep a safe distance.
  • Ensure portable electric tools are grounded or double-insulated.
    Use ground-fault circuit interrupters.
  • Identify and avoid electrical hazards when working on raised surfaces, such as scaffolds and ladders.

Though awareness of these top four construction hazards will help workers avoid common dangers, there are many additional hazards found on the job every day. Awareness, training, and a safety mind-set are all necessary components in creating a safe and healthy workplace.

Date Posted: 03-09-2016
Tags: caught in between hazards, construction hazards, electrocutions, fall protection, fall safety, ladder fall protection, struck-by hazards,
Categories: OSHA Safety,