Pedestrian Best Practices When Avoiding Construction Accidents
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 991 of the 4,693 workers that died due to accidents on the job in 2016 were in fact in construction. While these numbers appear “mediocre,” 6.5 million employees in the construction business are operating inside an estimated 252,000 construction sites across the United States alone. These numbers, added with the fact that the construction industry has in fact the highest numbers in fatal injuries compared to other industries, can put millions of lives at risk due to construction accidents. This is because construction accidents have what is called the “fatal four” of killer accidents, namely electrocution, being caught-in/between something, falls, and being struck by something.
This doesn’t mean of course that you shouldn’t try a job at construction anymore, nor does it say that you can nonchalantly walk by the sides of construction zones since the danger happens “inside” these areas. It’s just as important to have a good understanding of good safety measures not just on the part of the workers but you as a pedestrian as well. Here are some best practices when avoiding construction accidents:
- Be extra cautious when you see construction zones. Based on statistics above, construction accidents may more or less happen inside the construction zones themselves, but sometimes extra precaution when they’re nearby wouldn’t hurt for your safety. If the zone is for a tall building, for example, there are actually sets of nets placed on the side of buildings to ensure falling debris doesn’t fall directly on the sidewalk. When you’re in these areas, be extra cautious and be wary of the signs that are posted so you know exactly what you’re getting into.
- Be aware of rules and regulations. If you see a construction zone in your path and you have the time, try to approach someone near the outside of the construction zone and ask if you can speak with their immediate supervisor. You may introduce yourself as a concerned pedestrian and ask for basic information as to how they recommend you keep yourself safe and how you can make your presence outside not disruptive for them. Being aware of protocol like this can greatly help ensure that you’re likely aware of what’s happening inside the construction zone so you can research the kind of accidents that can happen.
- Be aware of your route, your entrances, and exits. When you enter a construction zone, make sure you’re aware of not just of where you’re supposed to go and how to get there, but you should be aware of alternative options especially when you think a particular construction zone near your usual route is too large or too complicated for you to cross. That way, you immediately know your options when you have to go back, go home, or take shortcuts. Be wary of the other sides of the accident zone, however, and don’t be ignorant of keeping yourself on high alert when you have to walk down alleys.
- Be prepared to wear equipment if you have to. Sometimes it may look silly, but wearing protective gear such as helmets and joint guards can help keep you safe in as much as they seem excessive. This is especially if you know the construction zone in your area will be staying for a long time, and your only option is to cross the road beside or within that area. If there’s some way for you to get the same gear as the construction officers in the area, then you may do so as well.
If you’re a pedestrian and a construction zone is in your path, you have a lot of factors to consider when it comes to your safety. Keeping a lookout for danger while being alert with your surroundings can greatly help ensure your safety. Click here to get to know more about the legal aspects of the subject matter.