Florida Construction Sites — A Dangerous Livelihood

Roger Brown was loading a 3,000-pound commercial oven in Palm Springs when it fell off the forklift and crushed him to death. John Morris was working on a highway in Miami when he was fatally hit by a motorist. John Halek was trimming trees for a landscaping company in Boca Raton when he was electrocuted by power lines. These recent, unfortunate incidents demonstrate the dangers of many Florida workplaces.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), there were 227 workers killed on the job in 2012 in Florida. The construction industry reported the largest number of deaths in the workplace (41).

Common construction site accidents

A typical construction site contains a volatile mix of frenzied activity, dangerous gear and hazardous materials in frequently closed locations. Site owners and contractors have a duty to provide their workers with safe conditions and adequate training for their challenging tasks. Unfortunately, some developers, contractors and owners are less concerned with worker safety than with their profit margins.

Some common hazards in the construction industry are:

  • Falls. Falls from elevated and shaky scaffolding and ladders can cause major back and head injuries, and falling onto rebar imposes impalement dangers.
  • Falling objects. Falling objects can crush limbs and cause traumatic brain injuries.
  • Slipping and tripping. Uneven surfaces, cables, uncovered holes and slippery floors can cause slipping or tripping that results in broken limbs or concussions.
  • Faulty equipment and vehicles. This includes defective and/or inadequately maintained tools, cranes and motor vehicles that can cause accidents.
  • Toxic substances. Exposure to asbestos and noise pollution can have devastating short- and long-term effects on your respiratory and/or nervous system.

Floridians doing construction work in our tropical climate are also susceptible to heat stress for much of the year.

If you think your workplace injury was caused by safety violations or negligent superiors, you should consider retaining a Florida workers’ compensation attorney who can help you obtain just compensation.

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