By Lonnie Fritz, Senior Market Professional, Construction Industries, Caterpillar Inc.

Despite an ever-increasing focus on safety in construction, the latest numbers aren’t great. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that one out of every five worker deaths in private industry in 2019 was in construction — a total of 1,061 fatalities. More than 200,000 nonfatal injuries occurred the same year. What’s causing these accidents? The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has narrowed it down to four main hazards and recommends these steps to help prevent them.

1. Falls. OSHA includes both falls from heights and slips and trips in this category. Most falls on construction sites are the result of uneven surfaces, improper mounting and dismounting from equipment, improper ladder use or from the lack of using fall protection equipment. Slips and trips are often caused by misplaced items or spills and leaks.

To prevent falls:

  • Keep work areas clean, clear of…