Safety authorities frequently remind employers and employees nationwide, including in Tennessee, of the importance of addressing hazards to prevent slip-and-fall accidents on construction sites. The risks of such incidents are exacerbated during the winter months when rain, melting snow and ice cause many surfaces to be slippery. They warn against the dangers of rushing when walking surfaces are treacherous, and suggest several precautions that workers can take.
Shoes with non-slip soles that provide proper traction are crucial, and workers must avoid distractions while they walk. Looking at the walking surface all the time can prevent both slips and trips because spilled liquids, wetness from workers’ shoes, random materials and equipment along with level changes are all typical causes of falls. Carrying a flashlight when walking in dimly lit areas is also recommended.
Floor openings pose significant hazards, and it might be wise to avoid walking on covers placed over them. Furthermore, jumping over floor openings or pits is also dangerous because of possible slippery conditions. Running up and down stairs is risky — handrails should be used, and workers will be well advised not to carry heavy loads on stairways. The same applies to ladders and scaffolding, and materials and tools must instead be hoisted up. These structures pose various fall hazards, especially when they have defective parts or if they are placed on unstable bases.
Workers might be safer if they keep in mind that even in areas with little snow, the cold and wet conditions of Tennessee winters make all workplace dangers are even more hazardous. Accidental falls that lead to construction site injuries can cause extended stays in the hospital, not to mention the lost wages. If injuries are reported to employers promptly, the workers’ compensation benefits claim process can be set in motion. An experienced attorney can help injured workers to pursue maximum benefits for medical expenses and lost wages to which they are entitled.