As Pennsylvania readers know, construction workers' accidents are a serious concern in our own state and throughout the country. Recently, in Georgia, two men were killed when the mobile lift that was carrying them fell in downtown Atlanta. Both men were working in a bucket attached to a mobile lift that was 40 feet off of the ground at the time of the accident. When the lift became stuck, workers tried to adjust it, and the faulty equipment toppled over and crashed to the ground.
Most residents of Pennsylvania do not consider healthcare workers to be at a greater risk for workplace injury. But according to the U.S. Department of Labor, that assumption would be wrong. In its annual report on workplace injury and illness, the department revealed that healthcare workers are highly susceptible to both injury and illness. The data was alarming.In the words of the labor secretary: "We remain concerned that more workers are injured in the healthcare and social assistance industry sector than in any other, including construction and manufacturing." She went on to say that, with 5.2 cases for every 100 workers, the healthcare industry had one of the highest rates of injuries and illness in 2010. The rate of 5.2 is especially alarming when considering that the rate for all private industry workers is 3.5 cases for every 100 workers. Statistics show that other major industries such as mining, construction and manufacturing actually had much lower rates in 2010 than healthcare and social assistance did on a national level.
There are inherent dangers to working at an industrial complex. Heavy machinery and powerful equipment, when not properly secured or supervised, can lead to a hazardous workplace. Sometimes this can lead to a minor injury; other times the incident is more serious. Unfortunately these accidents can also turn fatal, as was the case in Adamstown, Pennsylvania over the weekend when a serious accident resulted in the death of a 51-year-old employee.
Many types of construction jobs can lead to a workplace injury, and it only takes a split second for a pleasant work day to turn into a tragedy. A crane accident in Pennsylvania illustrates just how fast a person can go from productive activity to being pinned under a piece of equipment. This particular workplace injury victim may have been lucky to survive. The construction accident took place in late November when the crane the man was operating tipped over. The heavy machinery fell over a steep hillside, pinning the man for two hours while rescue workers tried to free him. Once the report of the accident came in, state police and local firefighters arrived at the location of the accident, where a construction company had been contracted to work on a bridge.