According to Health & Safety Executive figures, every year several thousands of workers in the construction industry are injured in accidents at work involving slips and trips. Approximately 1,000 of these slip and trip injuries involve dislocated joints or broken bones. Many of these slips and trips could have been avoided through better management of access routes and working areas. Below are five of the most common trip and slip hazards encountered by construction workers and how to prevent them.
Having to walk on uneven surfaces is one of the most commonly reported causes of work accidents related to slipping and tripping. The risk of injuries can be reduced by providing clearly designated walkways that are signposted, adequately lit and provide good underfoot conditions. Risks can be further reduced by ensuring all workers wear suitable footwear that provides good grip and providing mechanical lifting aids to prevent workers having to carry loads that could block their view ahead.
Injuries by tripping over waste or building materials are also fairly common. These injuries at work could be prevented by:
- Keeping storage and work areas tidy
- Minimising materials on site by planning deliveries
- Designating waste collection areas
- Providing bins and skips where required
Making responsibilities for waste removal clear also aids injury prevention.
Workplace injuries by tripping over trailing cables, which also occur frequently, can be prevented by using cordless tools whenever possible and running cables for mains-powered tools or temporary lighting at high levels, in particular along corridors.
Slippery or wet surfaces
Work injuries caused by slippery surfaces can be effectively reduced by treating muddy areas with stones; treating icy surfaces with grit or providing temporary, slip-resistant coverings. Signposting slippery areas that cannot be treated is also effective.
Trip-related injuries at work caused by small changes in the level of flooring (like in doorways, for example) can be avoided by installing ramps or, if this is not a viable option, using signs to warn workers.
Employers are legally required to ensure the health and safety of employees. If you sustained an injury in a construction site accident because your employer did nothing to prevent slips and trips, you may be eligible for industrial injury compensation. Accident Advice Helpline lawyers have the necessary experience to get you the work injury compensation you deserve. Call them now to get your claim started.
Date Published: September 30, 2014
Author: Accident Advice