OSHA Releases Guidelines to Prevent Falls During Residential Construction

There are many components that go into building a home: architects draft plans, permits must be acquired, materials must be purchased and companies are hired to complete the project. Electricians, plumbers, carpenters and other professionals will be on-site at various times until the home is finished. With so many workers with different specialties present, it is not uncommon for one or more workers to suffer an injury.

With the slowdown in the new home market, many construction workers are having difficulty finding steady employment. Missing available work due to injury can make tough times even worse, even with workers' compensation payments. Employers are tasked with keeping their employees safe; however, they also need to complete the project as soon as possible. Safety and the business's bottom line can sometimes be in direct conflict with one another, and unfortunately, accidents happen.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), falls are the number one cause of death for those who work in the residential construction industry. OSHA recently announced new safety guidelines designed to help prevent workers from falls at residential construction sites. The guidelines include tips for workers who would be performing tasks throughout the entire construction process.

  • Some of the recommendations in the OSHA guidelines include:
  • Using scaffolding when working on roofs
  • Installing guardrails on any above-ground scaffolding
  • Attaching anchors to areas strong enough to hold in case of a fall
  • Placing safety nets underneath workers on roofs
  • Performing exterior finishing work using aerial lifts when necessary

Each situation facing a worker will require careful analysis to determine how to best ensure safety. With so many different specialties involved on a job site, workers need to remain aware of their surroundings at all times.

Employers who refuse to adhere to OSHA rules may be face penalties and fines. If you or someone you know has been injured while on the job, contact an experienced workers' compensation attorney in your area. It is important to report your injury as soon as possible, as any delay may prevent your ability to recover for your injuries.