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3 ways the tools used in construction can cause worker injuries

On Behalf of | Mar 27, 2024 | Workplace Safety

Power tools and heavy equipment in the construction industry save people from exhausting labor. The ability to use impact tools and power drills saves someone the repetitive motion of hammering or manually using a screwdriver to achieve the same outcome.

Not only is it faster and more efficient to use power tools and special equipment, but doing so can also limit the damage caused by repetitive motions to the bodies of construction workers. Unfortunately, those benefits do come with a cost. Specifically, tools are a major contributor to construction site injuries.

How do power tools and similar equipment often lead to workers getting hurt in the construction sector?

Through malfunctions or mistakes

Sometimes, tools may malfunction, leading to a worker suffering a significant injury. An electrical short could cause burns or electrical shock. When a tool doesn’t act as expected, workers could end up hurt. Other times, workers might make a mistake, like improperly aligning a drill. They could cause serious traumatic injuries to themselves because of those minor errors. Power tools can cause lacerations, burns and a variety of other debilitating injuries due to a momentary oversight.

Through constant exposure to vibrations

Power tools produce vibrations in many cases. Someone casually using a power tool for a few minutes may not notice those vibrations and is unlikely to experience any medical consequences from them. However, when vibrations are particularly strong or someone has lengthy periods of exposure to vibrating tools, including drills, saws and jackhammers, they may develop vibration-related injuries that affect their strength and range of motion.

Through gravity-related incidents

One of the leading causes of severe injury and death at construction sites involves dropped supplies or equipment. Technically, workers doing job functions at a significant elevation should use special tethers to keep their equipment secure. Workers often cut corners and could potentially drop a tool that then strikes someone below them at the construction site. Those incidents could cause brain injuries or other serious medical concerns that put someone in the hospital and leave them unable to work.

Someone who has been hurt by the tools they use on a job site may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Filing a workers’ compensation claim can help someone replace lost wages and pay for treatment until their condition improves.