The Fatal Four in Construction Accidents By Michael Shelton on December 28, 2018

Construction workers at a site with steel girdersYear in and year out, four types of construction accidents lead the numbers in fatalities. These four kinds of accidents have be dubbed “the fatal four” by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). They are as follows:

  • Falls
  • Struck by Objects
  • Electrocution
  • Caught-In/Between (i.e., being crushed/compressed by objects)

In 2016, 63.7 percent of all construction worker fatalities were caused by the fatal four.

Attorney Michael E. Shelton has helped numerous clients in the greater Houston, TX who have been affected by the fatal four and other types of construction accidents. The team here at The Shelton Law Firm would like to go over these kinds of incidents in a bit more detail below.


Falls at construction sites are the most common cause of fatal construction worker injuries. In 2016, 384 construction workers were killed because of falls. Workers may fall from ladders, ledges, boom lift buckets, scaffolding, and so forth.

This is why safety lines, safety nets, and other precautions are so essential for anyone working at sites where falls could occur. Work near fall hazards should be discontinued in wet weather or high winds.

Struck by Objects

Being struck by objects is the second most common cause of fatalities at construction sites. In 2016, 93 workers were killed when they were struck by an object. This means objects that were dropped or any kinds of objects that were propelled at individuals at high velocity.

These kinds of accidents emphasize the importune of hard hats and eye protection while you are at a construction site. Objects should also be kept away from ledges and machinery should be operated properly.


Workers must be careful when working around any sort of electrical wiring. Even low-voltage shocks can prove fatal depending on the current. If someone survives electrocution, the injuries can still cause severe burns as well as lasting nerve damage. In 2016, 82 construction workers were killed by electrocution.

All precautions need to be taken when any electrical wiring is present. Only skilled electricians should be tasked with jobs that involve electricity.


Caught-in/between accidents refer to any incidents in which a worker is crushed or compressed by objects at a construction site. That could include heavy equipment, other kinds of vehicles, building materials, or collapsed scaffolding. In 2016, 72 construction workers died from these kinds of accidents.

All workers should look out for one another and be aware of their co-workers to help prevent these kinds of accidents.

How a Work Accident Lawyer Can Help

If you have lost a loved one in a construction accident, a lawyer can help you determine if a lawsuit is worth pursuing. Safety problems at a work site could be signs of negligence. Similarly, issues with insurance benefits following an injury or the loss of a loved one can be addressed by a skilled legal professional.

Knowing someone has your back following such a tragic and difficult incident can provide much needed peace of mind.

Contact a Skilled Construction Accident Lawyer

For more information about your legal rights and options following an on-the-job injury, be sure to contact an experienced work injury and accident lawyer. We at The Shelton Law Firm are here to help. You can reach our legal team by phone at (713) 807-0700.

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Michael E. Shelton

The Shelton Law Firm

Personal injury attorney Michael E. Shelton has been representing victims of catastrophic injuries in Houston, Texas, for nearly 50 years. He is proud to be a union card holder as a journeyman pipefitter and General Counsel for the Texas Building Trades Council, AFL-CIO. He is affiliated with several prestigious organizations, including:

  • The Texas Bar Association
  • The Houston Bar Association
  • The Louisiana State Bar
  • The Louisiana Association for Justice

If you are the victim of a personal injury, schedule a free consultation with The Shelton Law Firm today by contacting us online or calling (713) 807-0700.

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