Apr 2022

Falls From Height Cause the Most Fatal Construction Accidents

First aid support accident at work of construction worker at site. Builder accident falls scaffolding on floor, Safety team helps employee accident.

Falling from a ladder, scaffolding, or roof
can have grave consequences

There are many different types of construction accidents that can be fatal, but falls from height are the No. 1 hazard that construction workers face on the job site. In 2020, there were a total of 351 construction deaths due to falls and thousands of injuries.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) have all partnered together on a Fall Prevention Campaign. The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness about falls in construction and provide safety tips to workers and employers.

OSHA shares three steps employers and workers can take to help prevent falls from happening.


Having a set plan before any work begins is crucial to avoid safety hazards that can lead to falls. This includes deciding how the job will be completed, each task and step it will take to complete the job, and the safety equipment needed for each task. Planning ensures the success of the job and protects the safety of the workers.


Making sure workers are provided with the right equipment is key to protecting their safety. Employees working on a site six feet or more above lower levels are especially at risk for injury or death if a fall occurs. Workers need the right kinds of ladders, scaffolds, harnesses, and other safety gear to avoid an accident.


Everyone needs to be properly trained on the use of equipment. Workers should know everything about the equipment before using it. Employers also have to train workers on recognizing hazards on the job. Having training refreshers is highly advised.

Jobs that have the highest risk of falling

ConstructionConnect provides a list of the top 10 jobs that resulted in fatal injuries in 2020, and many of these jobs come with a risk of falling from height:

  • Construction Laborers – 308 deaths
  • Supervisors of Construction and Extraction Workers – 88 deaths
  • Roofers – 88 deaths
  • Carpenters – 79 deaths
  • Electricians – 70 deaths
  • Construction Equipment Operators – 65 deaths
  • Painters and Paperhangers – 53 deaths
  • Pipelayers, Plumber, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters – 30 deaths
  • Helpers, Construction Trades – 19 deaths
  • Structural Iron and Steel Workers – 16 deaths

Let a construction accident lawyer review your case

Recovering from a construction accident involving a fall can take a long time. Your health comes first and should be your main focus. But medical bills and other accident-related expenses can stack up fast, making it difficult to focus on healing. Whether you apply for workers’ compensation benefits or file a lawsuit against a negligent third party, you should be able to receive financial compensation for your losses. Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done.

That’s where we come in. At the Law Offices of Deborah G. Kohl, we have years of experience getting our clients the medical care and compensation they deserve. We know the ins and outs of the law in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, and we know what it takes to get real results for our clients.

Discover what our law firm can do for you. Contact us today for a free consultation with an experienced construction accident lawyer. We have three offices conveniently located in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

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