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Roadway Construction Worker Fatalities Between Years 2005-2010


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As fatalities and accidents are never to be taken lightly, it is not the intent of the writer to assume that because the number of fatalities may have declined, that they are not still serious and that the loss of life and the loved ones left behind are still of vital importance. We must however often compile statistics and treat numbers as just they are - numbers, for sake of gleaning information that may save lives in the future.


Workplace fatalities that occur at a road construction site typically account for 1.5% to 3% of all workplace fatalities annually.


Fatality Trends: Roadway construction worker fatalities reached a high point in 2005 with 165 fatalities. Between 2005 and 2008 the numbers declined, then rose slightly in 2009, and declined again in 2010.


Fatality Causes: The primary causes of worker fatalities in recent years were:

  • Runovers/backovers (often by dump trucks): 48%
  • Collision Between Vehicles/Mobile Equipment: 14%
  • Caught in Between/Struck by Construction Equipment and Objects: 14%


Runovers/Backovers: Nearly half of worker fatalities are caused when workers are run over or backed over by vehicles or mobile equipment. More than half of these fatalities were workers struck by construction vehicles. Between 2005 and 2010 runovers/backovers were the cause of an average of 48% of worker fatalities. In 2010 runovers/backovers were the cause of 43% of worker fatalities, a slight decline from 2009 (46%).


For these types of fatalities, between 2003 and 2007, more workers were struck and killed by construction vehicles (38%) than by cars, vans, and tractor-trailers (33%).


Vehicle Collisions: The second most common cause of worker fatalities are collisions between vehicles/mobile equipment. ◦Between 2005 and 2010 this was the cause of an average of 14% of worker fatalities each year. In 2010 this was the cause of 19% of worker fatalities. This is a slight increase from 2009 (16%).


Caught in Between or Struck by Object: The third most common cause of worker fatalities are workers caught between or struck by construction equipment and objects.


Between 2005 and 2010 this was the cause of an average of 14% of worker fatalities. In 2010 this was the cause of 8% of worker fatalities. This is a decline from 2009 (16%) and the lowest reported number in recent years.


The following facts and statistics were obtained using data from a presentation on Injury Hazards in Road and Bridge Construction, Fatal Occupational Injuries at Road Construction Sites and 2003-2011 Worker Fatalities

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