Construction Sites Targeted That Put Workers At Risk

 

Focusing on the importance of workplace safety for construction companies, officials in New Zealand are making a concerted effort to see to it that 2013 is a safer year in this industry.
 
According to information from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, its inspectors passed out more than 1,000 notices and written warnings to construction companies performing work at height unsafely nationwide a year ago.
 
In an effort to protect workers, inspectors a year ago assessed more than 1,600 construction sites tied to the Preventing Falls from Height project, which seeks to lessen injuries and fatalities caused by falls in the construction sector. The project is continuing over the next 12 months, with construction workers being urged to make safety a priority in the New Year.
 
 
Sites Targeted That Put Workers at Risk
 
“The Ministry will continue to target sites that carry out work at height unsafely and those companies that put their workers at risk,” stated Francois Barton, the Ministry’s Southern Division general manager. We want to see enforcement figures improving in 2013 – safe work at height should be standard practice in the industry.
 
“Despite the high number of notices and warnings issued last year, it has been very positive to see some construction companies using innovative solutions to ensure their staff are safe while working at height. Companies are using adaptive scaffolding systems, mobile stair systems instead of ladders, and soft landing systems to stop workers getting hurt from falling off the top plate.”
 
Barton added that a sizable number of these solutions are also increasing productivity by bettering access for builders and the tradespeople that work alongside them.
 
 
Hundreds of Construction Workers Injured Every Year
 
Builders, roofers, electrical workers, painters and decorators are most apt to fall from height and get seriously hurt while they are working, according to officials.
 
“Tradespeople are going back to work after a few weeks off, so now is the time for a renewed focus on safety issues,” Barton remarked.
 
Hundreds of construction workers are injured on building sites every year – these accidents are preventable if precautions are in place. Workers must make safety a priority, especially during summer when there is an overall increase in workplace injury, according to Barton.
 
 
Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com.  Contact: mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com.
 
©2013 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

Construction Fatalities Cost California Residents $2.9 billion

 

 
168 Construction Workers Killed in Workplace Accidents
 
Occupational injuries and fatalities in the construction industry cost California residents $2.9 billion between 2008 and 2010, a new Public Citizen report shows. Public Citizen is a national, nonprofit consumer advocacy organization.
 
The report, “The Price of Inaction: A Comprehensive Look at the Costs of Injuries and Fatalities in California’s Construction Industry,” quantifies the estimated costs of deaths and injuries in the state’s construction industry by considering an array of factors.
 
From 2008 to 2010, 168 construction workers were killed in workplace accidents in California. Additionally, the state recorded 50,700 construction-industry injuries and illnesses that required days away from work or a job transfer.
 
Drawing on a comprehensive 2004 journal article that analyzed the cost of occupational injuries, and combining the paper’s findings with updated fatality and injury data, the group determined that such incidents cost the state’s economy $2.9 billion during the three-year period.
 
 
Report Proposes Safety Required for State Contracts
 
As a partial solution, the report proposes that California pass a law requiring companies to demonstrate adherence to safety standards in order to be eligible to bid for state contracts. Such a solution not only would ensure that public-sector projects are fulfilled by responsible contractors but also would provide incentives for companies to maintain clean records while working on private-sector sites.
 
The report notes that California already screens construction companies to ensure that they have met performance standards in the past and haven’t violated any laws. The state also incorporates some safety standards in its prequalification system. But the system should be expanded to require construction firms to put greater emphasis on demonstrating that they provide safety training to workers and site supervisors, and that they have not had serious safety violations.
 
 
 
Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.comContact: mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com.
 
©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

Young Women Struck and Killed Working as Flag Person

 

Worked as Flag Person in Construction Zone
 
Charges were recently filed in the death of a young woman who was struck and killed while working as a flag person in a construction zone in southern Saskatchewan.
 
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) announced that they have charged Keith Dunford, 44, of Regina with criminal negligence causing death and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing death.
 
The charges come almost two months to the day after Ashley Richards was hit near Midale, southeast of Weyburn. The 18-year-old, who was originally from Lakeside, N.B., was working on a highway crew when she was struck by an SUV.
 
Proper Investigation Completed
 
''It's imperative that we do a proper investigation,'' Sgt. Paul Dawson told the media.
 
''As part of this we have a re-constructionist that comes. This is not something that's done immediately at the scene. It takes time to do that, so that's part of the process. Personally, I don't think two months is a long time for a serious offence like this.
 
''As well, we also consulted with the Crown on the appropriate charges.''
 
Motorists are required to slow to 35 mph when passing workers and equipment in construction zones in Saskatchewan.
 
 
Police Blitz on Construction Zones
 
Dawson said RCMP enforced the law before the accident, but Richards' death prompted police to begin blitzes in the busiest orange-signed construction zones.
 
''In the months of September and October, our dedicated traffic units have written over 400 tickets in the orange zone. That doesn't include tickets written by regular detachment members, so that's quite a lot of tickets that have been written for that one offence,'' added Dawson. ''That's solely for speeding over 35 in the construction zone  – over 400 tickets.''
 
In one case on Thanksgiving weekend, traffic officers near Maidstone said they clocked an SUV going 83 mph in a construction zone.
 
 
Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com. Contact: mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com.
 
©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

Construction Workers, Independent Contractors, and Workers Comp

 

Who Is and Isn’t Covered by Workers Comp in Construction?

 

Employers in the construction industry are often perplexed as to who they should cover with their workers’ compensation insurance policy.  Full-time employees are covered, but what about part-time employees, day laborers, leased employees, borrowed employees and occasional volunteer work by a family member?  In most states all of these types of employees will be covered by the workers’ compensation insurance policy.  However, independent contractors are normally excluded from coverage by the workers’ compensation insurance policy.

 

The issue that arises most often between independent contractors and construction company employers is when the independent contractor does not have workers’ compensation insurance of his/her own and is injured while working for the employer.  When the injury is severe and the independent contractor does not have workers’ compensation coverage, often the independent contractor will try to collect workers’ compensation benefits from the employer’s workers’ compensation insurance company.

 

 

Employers Coverage Denys Claims From Independent Contractors

 

The employer’s workers’ compensation insurer will normally deny the claim as the insurer has not collected any premium for the additional exposure of the independent contractor.  The independent contractor (and his/her attorney) will often turn to the Workers’ Compensation Board/Industrial Commission and ask the governing authority to rule on whether or not there is coverage for the independent contractor.

 

The Board or Commission will normally look closely for any reason where they can classify the independent contractor as an employee of the construction company employer.  If the employer has not complied with all the requirements of hiring the independent contractor as an independent contractor, the Board or Commission will find the injured worker to be an employee.

 

 

Construction Employers Need to Know Law

 

For the construction company employer to protect its self from workers’ compensation claims of independent contractors claiming workers’ compensation benefits, the employer should know the law pertaining to independent contractors in their state.  Many states follow the federal government guidelines outlined in the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  On the federal level, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled several times that there is not a single issue that makes a worker an independent contractor as opposed to an employee, but a preponderance of all the information surrounding the independent contractor-employer relationship.

 

 

Federal Fair Labor Standards Act

 

Per FLSA, the following issues define whether or not the worker is an independent contractor or an employee:

 

  1. The extent to which the services rendered are an integral part of the principal’s business

 

  1. The permanency of the relationship

 

  1. The amount of the alleged contractor’s investment in the facilities and equipment

 

  1. The nature and degree of control by the principal

 

  1. The alleged contractor’s opportunities for profit or loss

 

  1. The amount of initiative, judgment, or foresight in open market competition with others required for the success of the claimed independent contractor

 

  1. The degree of independent business organization and operation

 

Generally put:

 

  • If the construction company employer utilizes only one independent contractor to always perform the same type of work, he may be considered an employee.

 

  • If the independent contractor works for no other company, he may be considered an employee.

 

  • If the construction company controls when, where and how work is performed, the worker will be considered an employee.

 

  • If the worker has no exposure to financial loss on a job, he will be considered an employee.

 

  • If the worker maintains a separate business address, he will most likely be considered an independent contractor

 

  • If the worker has a federal identification number for income tax purposes, and does not use a social security number, he is more likely to be considered an independent contractor

 

 

 

Factors That Do Not Determine Employment Status

 

There are some factors that construction-company employers think should be considered in the determination of employment status, but generally the states do not agree.  The factors that normally do not make a difference include:

 

  • The location of where the work is performed

 

  • The lack of a formal hiring agreement

 

  • The licensing, or lack thereof, the worker

 

  • The frequency or timing of payment

 

 

Tips to Protect Against Contractor Claiming to be Employee

 

Construction companies can protect themselves from an independent contractor claiming to be an employee.  The construction company must mandate the independent contractor provide a copy of a policy of workers’ compensation insurance in the name of the independent contractor.  The construction company should contact the independent contractor’s insurance agent and confirm the workers’ compensation policy is paid up and has not been cancelled.

 

Construction company employers should also have a formal contract with the independent contractor stating:

 

  • The work to be performed will be completed by a definite date, but the independent contractor will determine the days and hours actually worked

 

  • The independent contractor will furnish his/her own materials, equipment and tools

 

  • The independent contractor will complete the agreed to work for the set price, regardless of the number of hours/days needed to complete the job and regardless of whether or not the independent contractor makes a profit.

 

  • The independent contractor will maintain workers’ compensation insurance covering all of the independent contractor’s employees until the agreed work is completed to the satisfaction of the construction company

 

  • The independent contractor will determine the means and methods of how the work is performed

 

  • The independent contractor is free to work for other employers before, during and after the work for the construction company

 

 

Author Rebecca Shafer, JD, President of Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is a national expert in the field of workers compensation. She is a writer, speaker, and publisher. Her expertise is working with employers to reduce workers compensation costs, and her clients include airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. She is the author of the #1 selling book on cost containment, Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

Editor Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher. www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com. Contact: mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com.

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

 


Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

Report Shows Construction Industry Cost Maryland 712 Million, State Taking Action

 

Public Citizen Report Shows Construction Injury Costs

 

Occupational injuries and fatalities in the construction industry cost Maryland residents $712.8 million between 2008 and 2010, a new Public Citizen report shows.

 

The report, ThePriceofInactionAComprehensiveLookattheCostsofInjuriesandFatalitiesinMarylandsConstructionIndustry,” quantifies the estimated costs of deaths and injuries in the state’s construction industry by considering an array of factors.

 

 

18,600 Construction Injury Accidents from 2008 – 2010

 

During the period of 2008 to 2010, Maryland recorded 18,600 construction industry accidents, of which 11,000 required days away from work or job transfer. Additionally, 55 construction-related fatalities were reported in these years.

 

Public Citizen determined the costs of occupational injuries and fatalities through a conservative methodology that totaled costs from three broad categories: direct costs, indirect costs and quality of life costs. Combined, the incidents cost the state’s economy $712.8 million during the three-year period.

 

“The economic picture we came up with is quite staggering,” said Keith Wrightson, worker safety and health advocate for Public Citizen’s Congress Watch division. “We now know that construction accidents impose huge economic costs in addition to tremendous pain.”

 

 

Public Construction Contracts to be Awarded only to Strong Safety Records

 

A solution proposed in the report is to award public construction contracts only to companies that have strong safety records, according to Public Citizen.

 

The report notes that Maryland already screens construction companies to ensure that they meet standards on past performance, bonding capacity and legal proceedings. But safety is excluded from the state’s pre-qualification system. The system should reportedly be expanded to require construction firms to demonstrate that they provide safety training to workers and site supervisors, and that they do not have serious safety violations.

 

Implementing a pre-qualification process for public construction projects would not address all of the industry’s safety problems, according to Wrightson. However, such a positive step could yield significant gains to the economy for minimal costs.

 

“It’s the right thing to do and would position Maryland as a leader in occupational safety and health,” Wrightson added.

 

 

<pAuthor Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com.  Contact:  mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com.

 
WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

13 Employees Die Every Day at Work, OSHA Can Be Your Partner in Prevention

 

What Is OSHA and What Do They Do?
 
Mention of the word “OSHA” around employers usually makes them cringe with discomfort.  But really what is OSHA and what do they do?  How can they help employers instead of just fining and disciplining them?
 
The answer to this comes in many forms, but let’s take a look at some general OSHA stats.  Usually when OSHA is called, someone is whistle-blowing on their employer for safety reasons.  Another common reason is that OSHA is called to investigate a serious injury or fatality on the job—which is any employer or insurance company’s worst nightmare. 
 
The following statistics were taken from the OSHA website http://www.osha.gov/oshstats/commonstats.html
 
“OSHA is a small agency; with our state partners we have approximately 2,200 inspectors responsible for the health and safety of 130 million workers, employed at more than 8 million worksites around the nation — which translates to about one compliance officer for every 59,000 workers.”[WCx]
 
 
Worker Injuries, Illnesses and fatalities
 
4,690 workers were killed on the job in 2010 [BLS revised 2010 workplace fatality data*] (3.6 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers) — more than 90 a week or nearly 13 deaths every day. (This is a slight increase from the 4,551, fatal work injuries in 2009, but the second lowest annual total since the fatal injury census was first conducted in 1992).
 
"Every day in America, 13 people go to work and never come home. Every year in America, nearly 4 million people suffer a workplace injury from which some may never recover. These are preventable tragedies that disable our workers, devastate our families, and damage our economy. American workers are not looking for a handout or a free lunch. They are looking for a good day's pay for a hard day's work. They just want to go to work, provide for their families, and get home in one piece."
– Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, Workers Memorial Day speech April 26, 2012
 
 
Construction's "Fatal Four"
 
Out of 4,206* worker fatalities in private industry in calendar year 2010, 774 or 18.7% were in construction. The leading causes of worker deaths on construction sites were falls, followed by electrocution, struck by object, and caught-in/between. These "Fatal Four" were responsible for nearly three out of five (56%) construction worker deaths in 2010*, Bureau of Labor Statistics reports. Eliminating the Fatal Four would save 437 workers' lives in America every year.
 
  • Falls – 264 out of 774 total deaths in construction in CY 2010 (34%)
  • Electrocutions – 76 (10%)
  • Struck by Object – 64 (8%)
  • Caught-in/between – 33 (4%)
 
 
Top 10 most frequently cited OSHA standards violated in FY2011
 
  • Scaffolding, general requirements, construction (29 CFR 1926.451)
  • Fall protection, construction (29 CFR 1926.501)
  • Hazard communication standard, general industry (29 CFR 1910.1200)
  • Respiratory protection, general industry (29 CFR 1910.134)
  • Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout), general industry (29 CFR 1910.147)
  • Electrical, wiring methods, components and equipment, general industry (29 CFR 1910.305)
  • Powered industrial trucks, general industry (29 CFR 1910.178)
  • Ladders, construction (29 CFR 1926.1053)
  • Electrical systems design, general requirements, general industry (29 CFR 1910.303)
  • Machine guarding (machines, general requirements, general industry) (29 CFR 1910.212) [WCx]
 
 
OSHA is Making a Difference
 
In four decades, OSHA and our state partners, coupled with the efforts of employers, safety and health professionals, unions and advocates, have had a dramatic effect on workplace safety.
 
  • Worker deaths in America are down — from about 38 worker deaths a day in 1970 to 13 a day in 2010
  • Worker injuries and illnesses are down — from 10.9 incidents per 100 workers in 1972 to fewer than 4 per 100 in 2010.
 
 
Summary
 
The “Fatal Four” injuries within the realm of construction can be hard to avoid.  Falls and electrocutions can happen.  But being struck by objects and being caught in/between things can be lessened with proper training and overall increased alertness within your workforce on the jobsite.  All injuries cannot be prevented, but these stats can be an eye opener for any employer that does construction-type work. 
 
The mere fact that on any given day, 13 workers leave the house for work and never come home due to a fatality incident is a scary statistic.  Fatality claims are an adjuster’s worst nightmare.  There are a ton of issues, and none of them are pleasant.  Every worker out there doesn’t think it will happen to them, but it happens 13 times every day.
 
Safety is a team effort, and every employee has to do their part. Share these points with your staff at your next meeting, and be proactive in ways to lessen risk on the jobsite.  By implementing more safety awareness, you could very well be saving the life of one of your employees. 
 
 
 

Author Rebecca Shafer, JD, President of Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is a national expert in the field of workers compensation. She is a writer, speaker, and publisher. Her expertise is working with employers to reduce workers compensation costs, and her clients include airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. She is the author of the #1 selling book on cost containment, Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

Editor Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com Contact mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

Construction Industry Has High Back Injury Rate

The Center for Construction Research and Training (CCRT) recently reported that the construction industry has the highest incident rate of back injuries of any industry except transportation. Of all the construction-related injuries that occur each year, one-fourth of them are back injuries.

Every year, a back injury causes 1 in 100 construction workers to miss work; usually missing approximately seven workdays, but sometimes more than 30, according to CCRT. The majority of back problems are low-back injuries. Repeated injury to the back can cause permanent damage and end their career.

 

Most back injuries are sprains and strains from lifting, lowering, carrying, pushing, and pulling materials. According to CCRT, workers are at greater risk of low-back injury if they often carry heavy loads, must twist while carrying heavy loads, or work a lot while bent over or in other awkward postures.

 

Injuries can be reduced by planning, changing how work is done, and training workers and supervisors.


Among the ways
to reduce injuries are:

  • Cut down on carrying. Have materials delivered close to where they will be used.
  • Store materials at waist height whenever possible.
  • Raise your work to waist level, if you can. Pipefitters use pipe stands. Masons have adjustable scaffolds to keep the work at waist height.
  • Make sure floors and walkways are clear and dry. Slips and trips are a big cause of back injuries.
  • Take rest breaks. When tired, you are more prone to injury.

 

Get Assistance

  • Use carts, dollies, forklifts, and hoists to move materials, not your back.
  • Use carrying tools with handles to get a good grip on wallboard or other odd-shaped loads.
  • If materials weigh more than about 50 pounds, do not lift them. Get help from another worker or use a cart.

 

Move Carefully

  • When lifting or carrying materials, keep the load as close to the body as possible.
  • Try not to twist, when lifting and lowering materials. Turn the whole body instead.
  • Lift and lower materials in a smooth steady way. Try not to jerk the lift.
  • When picking up materials off the ground, try supporting by leaning on something while lifting. Do not bend over; instead, kneel on one knee and pull the load up on to the knee before standing. (Wear kneepads when kneeling.)

 

Apprentices

Apprentices get some of the hardest work to do. Being young and strong, they sometimes carry more weight than they should. Make sure apprentices are protected against back injuries, so they do not end up with back problems and have to leave the trades. Work with the employer to decide how the work can be changed to protect you and your coworkers from back injuries.

 
Build back-safety into any training. Fewer injuries mean better productivity and lower costs.

 

What about Back Belts?

Some contractors have workers wear back belts. If a doctor prescribes a back belt, it may help someone recovering from a back injury. But a recent government study (by NIOSH) found no evidence that back belts can prevent injuries.[WCx]

 

If you have questions about stretching exercises, back belts, or other issues, call your local union, the Center to Protect Workers’ Rights (CPWR) (301-578-8500 or www.cpwr.com ), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (1-800-35-NIOSH or www.cdc.gov/niosh), or OSHA (1-800-321-OSHA or www.osha.gov). Or check the Web site: www.elcosh.org.

Author Robert Elliott, executive vice president, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. He is an editor and contributor to Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

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Construction Companies Fined after Worker Fatality

A pair of construction companies has been fined a total of £65,000 ($103,000) after a British man was killed when a steel beam weighing more than a ton fell on him while it was being unloaded from a lorry. Construction safety is a problem worldwide.

 

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) announced its intention to prosecute Fisher Engineering and CM Structural Service as a result of an incident causing the death of French national Hugues Makambila who was working as a cleaner on the construction site at Harlequin Avenue, Brentford.

 

A lorry load of steel beams arrived on site and parked adjacent to a pedestrian walkway in an area not designated for unloading. An HSE investigation found that a company director of CM Structural Services Ltd had noticed a steel beam was hanging over the right side of the lorry, but no measures were taken to restrain the load or to prevent the beam from falling.

 

CM Structural Services Ltd began unloading the steel using a forklift truck but it did not put any measures into place to prevent people walking down the pavement nor did it put up any signs warning people that unloading was taking place.

 

During unloading, a steel beam weighing 1.382 tons fell from the lorry onto the pedestrian walkway and onto Makambila, from Bordeaux, who was on the pedestrian walkway of the site. He died instantly.

 

Fisher Engineering Ltd was responsible for the manufacture, delivery, and installation of the structural steelwork. In turn Fisher Engineering had contracted CM Structural Services Ltd to erect the steelwork.

 

Fisher Engineering Ltd, of Ballinamallard, Enniskillen, Northern Ireland was fined £50,000 ($80,000) and ordered to pay costs of £16,595 ($26,000). CM Structural Services Ltd, of Killynure Road, Carryduff, and Northern Ireland was fined approximately £15,000 ($24000) and ordered to pay costs of £12,692 ($20,000).
 
 
According to Inspector Lisa Chappell, "This tragic incident was easily preventable. The risks involved in the handling and delivery of steel stock are well known to those in the industry.

 

"Appropriate measures to control these hazards should have been in place, including ensuring there is effective communication between the duty holders responsible for planning and managing deliveries, inspecting deliveries upon arrival and providing a clearly defined exclusion zone where unloading can be carried out safely.(WCxKit)

 

"These measures are neither costly nor time consuming, yet the failures of the companies involved in this incident contributed to the death of a respected worker whose family continues to grieve the loss of a son, brother, and husband."

 

Author Robert Elliott, executive vice president, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. He is an editor and contributor to Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.
 
 
WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT GUIDEBOOK:  www.WCManual.com
WORK COMP CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/calculator.php
 
 
Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.
 
©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

Hispanic Construction Workers Have Greater Risk of Dying

According to a new study from the Center for Construction Research and Training, construction workers in the United States have a large risk of work-related injuries and an increased risk of work-related illness and death.
 
 
Researchers peered over data from several national sources and discovered that a construction worker has a 75 percent chance of suffering a disabling injury over a 45-year career, and a 1-in-200 risk of being fatally injured at work. (WCxKit)
 
 
Meantime, Hispanic construction workers have a 20 percent greater risk of dying from a work-related injury than whites.
 
 
The authors of the study also discovered that people who begin construction work at age 20 have a 15 percent chance of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease over their lifetime and an 11 percent chance of developing dust-related changes to the lung tissue.
 
 
"While great strides have been made in reducing construction injuries and illnesses, the numbers are still stubbornly high," Pete Stafford, executive director of CPWR, commented in an APHA news release. (WCxKit)
 
 
"Workers and their families suffer the consequences of disabling injuries, and this research shows it's far too common. So we must continue to raise awareness of the problems and hope to see our research findings put to use to reduce construction fatalities, injuries and illnesses," Stafford added.
 
 

Nova Scotia Labor Department Charges Employer Following Death

Nova Scotia's Labor Department has laid charges following an 18 month investigation into the death of a 12-year-old boy who was run over by a truck in Cape Breton.

 

According to information from the NSLD, Dylan LeBlanc of Cheticamp was killed while riding his bicycle near a local inn that was being renovated in August 2010. The boy was hit and run over by a boom truck. (WCxKit)

 


Labor Department spokesman Brian Taylor
reports charges were laid recently against 5823 NWT Ltd., the company that owns Maison Fiset House, and project manager Darren MacPhee.

 

Taylor says the company has been charged with failing to take every reasonable precaution to ensure the health and safety of people at the workplace and failing to take adequate precautions to ensure pedestrian safety.

 

He says MacPhee is charged with failing to take reasonable precautions to ensure health and safety at or near the project.

 

Taylor says a third person who has not been named by officials is also charged, but that person has not been served notice yet. (WCxKit)

 

Those charged are to appear in provincial court in the spring in Port Hood, N.S

 

Author Robert Elliott, executive vice president, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. He is an editor and contributor to Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

More Than One-Third of Alberta Construction Site Inspections Show Issues

More than 600 inspections of residential construction sites in Alberta lead to close to 400 orders issued, according to a recent report from The Canadian Press.

 

Occupational Health and Safety did the inspections recently and issued 394 orders, including 83 stop-work orders.(WCxKit)
 

A lack of fall protection
, or a fall protection plan, accounted for 131 orders, approximately one-third of all orders issued.

 

Dave Hancock, minister of Human Services, responsible for Occupational Health and Safety, noted the province needs to create a culture of workplace health and safety in all Albertans. He reports he wants to assess the impact of all three focused inspection campaigns the province conducted this year.

For the past several months, OHS has carried out a pilot program of evening and weekend inspections, including the recent residential construction campaign.

 

Hancock states the stepped-up schedule will continue on a regular basis.

 

''There are many sectors of our province's workforce that don't clock in from nine to five,'' said Hancock.(WCxKit)

'Revising the working hours of our OHS officers to include weekends and evenings only makes sense. This, along with our ongoing educational efforts and continuing to work with industry and safety associations, will help improve compliance in the workplace,'' he added.


Author Robert Elliott, executive vice president, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. See www.LowerWC.com for more information. Contact: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

2012 NEW WORKERS COMP BOOK:  www.WCManual.com 
WORK COMP CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/calculator.php

 
Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.
 
©2011 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

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