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Is construction prone to accidents at work?

There are many accidents at work in the construction industry. Fortunately, there are solutions to prevent these.

Published on 7 July 2023 - Manut-LM

As you can discover at the end of this article, Manut-LM offers solutions to minimize the risk of accidents at work while improving the well-being of your employees.

What is an accident at work?

An accident at work is “Whatever the cause, the accident occurring as a result of or in connection with work to any employee or person working, in any capacity or in any place whatsoever, for one or more employers or heads of enterprise”, according to Article 411-1 of the Social Security Code.

Construction represents the economic sector of buildings and public works. Most of the time, accidents at work in the construction sector cause serious damage to employees.

The qualification of an accident at work is based on three major criteria. They make it possible to establish the link with the employer, the exact date of the accident at work and the seriousness of the facts.

These three criteria are:

  • The relationship between the injured person and the employer;
  • The precise date of the accident;
  • If the accident at work resulted in physical and psychological abuse.

The relationship between the injured person and the employer can be established on the basis of the employment contract. There must be an employment contract giving the employee the right to exercise and establishing his hierarchical supervision.

In addition, the accident can be located in time. It is an event that can be justified by a known and precise date. If it leads to the deterioration of the employee’s health for months, it can be qualified as an occupational disease, requiring special procedures.

Finally, for example, an arm broken during a fall in the workplace is considered to be a case of accident at work. It is common that on construction sites, tools, materials cause accidents at work to employees. Similarly, wrong maneuvers can lead to an accident in the workplace.

Accidents at work are most often observed in construction sites, but the accident must be datable, unlike musculoskeletal disorders that occur after a few years of work and are considered occupational diseases.

What are the statistics of accidents at work in the construction industry?

Accidents at work caused by construction lead to huge losses. In the construction sector, the number of working days lost due to accidents at work is 8 million days per year, representing an average of 36,000 full-time jobs.

For its part, the cost of accidents at work for contributions amounts to just over one billion euros, while the enrolment rate of employees in the general scheme is 8%.

There are 56 accidents at work per 1,000 employees in the construction sector, while the average is 36 in the other sectors. In 2018, construction accounted for 14% of occupational accidents (all sectors combined), with a fatality rate of 19%. Accidents at work also lead to permanent disabilities; These amount to 16%.

Employees in the construction sector are highly exposed to accidents at work. We are talking about one in 18 employees who is the victim of a workplace accident in the course of a year. He can accumulate an average of 220 days of absence from work.

The causes of accidents that can give rise to work stoppage are:

  • Manual handling of loads with 48% of cases, which is also a cause of musculoskeletal disorders;
  • Falls from heights, which account for 17% of cases;
  • Manual tools, which account for 15% of cases;
  • Falls on the same level account for 14% of cases.

As a reminder, a work stoppage related to an accident or an occupational disease is covered by social security, which then pays daily allowances to the employee concerned. Under certain conditions, a salary supplement may be paid by the employer.

How do Manut-LM solutions prevent workplace accidents in the construction industry?

Business leaders working in the construction industry have several effective solutions to prevent occupational risks on the sites for which they are responsible. Article L.230-2 of the Labor Code stipulates that each employer must take “the necessary measures to ensure the safety and protect the physical and mental health of the workers of the establishment, including temporary workers.”

Organizing the site makes it easy to identify possible risks and to take adequate measures to prevent these risks. Focusing on ground work is also important to reduce the risk of falling from a height and mechanical solutions can also be effective. That’s why Manut-LM offers practical solutions for height work!

There was a significant decrease in the number of occupational accidents in 2016. It has dropped to 33.8 per thousand employees thanks to lifting and gripping solutions at height. Manut-LM has developed lifting tube manipualters for gripping, laying and lifting heavy loads.

As manual handling is the leading cause of accidents at work (59% of cases), we have encouraged the expansion of solutions to avoid it. These solutions are effective aids to manual handling. To avoid manual tooling, our tools contribute enormously to the reduction of accidents at work.

In addition to these handling aids, managers must also provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) adapted to each employee working on a construction site. It is also important to educate employees about safety techniques at work sites.

Finally, construction is certainly conducive to the occurrence of accidents at work, but preventing the risk of accidents is a major safety issue. This prevention is not limited to employers. Employees themselves must be aware of this and work to reduce accidents at work in the construction sector.

What is considered an accident at work?

A work accident is when a sudden event which, for whatever reason, caused you bodily injury or psychological injury, and which happened to you during your professional activity.

What are the criteria that define an accident at work?

To qualify an accident as an accident at work, it is important to know:

  • What is the relationship between the injured person and the employer;
  • The place and circumstances of the accident;
  • The precise date of the accident;
  • If the accident resulted in physical and psychological abuse of the employee.
Who pays you when you are injured at work?

When you are the victim of an accident at work, you receive daily allowances paid by the social security institution (CPAM, MSA) to which you are affiliated.

What are the solutions to prevent accidents at work in companies in the construction sector?

To prevent accidents at work, employers must:

  • Organize the site to easily identify possible risks and take adequate measures to prevent these risks;
  • Favor ground work to reduce the risk of falling from a height;
  • Focus on mechanical solutions;
  • Provide all Personal Protective Equipment employees.
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