Tag Archive for Government

Workplace Fatalities Jump in 2014

Workplace Fatalities Jump in 2014A preliminary report by the Labor Department estimated 4,679 workplace fatalities in the U.S. last year, up from 4,585 in 2013, or 2% year over year.

The report is based on incomplete reporting and initial estimates, according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal. But if the numbers hold true, the oil and gas industry posted the highest gain at 27% over the previous year. Many of those deaths were in top oil-producing states, including Texas, Wyoming and Colorado. Meanwhile, oil-related deaths in North Dakota fell 32%.

Other industries responsible for the sharp rise include construction, agriculture, manufacturing and mining. The WSJ report also noted that female deaths rose from 8% Read more

Roles and Responsibilities for Communicating Safety Hazards at Construction Sites

Roles and Responsibilities for Communicating Safety Hazards at the Job SiteWith full enforcement of OSHA’s new rule for construction work in confined spaces set for October 2, 2015, construction firms large and small need to understand their roles and responsibilities for communicating safety hazards at construction sites.


Understanding the roles of all parties involved is an essential element of hazard communication. It’s sometimes unclear, even for seasoned construction pros.

The three basic roles, as defined by OSHA, are:

Host Employer

This is usually the owner of the site, but may be a firm representing the owner, such as a general contractor.

Controlling Employer

This party manages the job site as a whole, including firms hired for specific work. In Read more

Top Trends Shaping the Future of Construction Firms

Top Trends Shaping the Future of Construction FirmsThe construction industry is changing faster than ever. Customer expectations and competition are driving firms to evolve quickly or fail. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Several emerging trends are changing construction firms for the better. Others, however, are keeping the industry from meeting rising demands. Construction Dive recently published the article 10 Trends Defining the Construction Industry. We thought you might find her list interesting. Here’s a brief look at some of her top picks, along with a few of our own.

Labor Shortage

It’s the one trend everyone is talking about. Construction needs more workers to keep up with demand. Contractors had 143,000 unfilled jobs in June of this year, according to the Read more

New OSHA Smartphone App Gauges Risk of Heat Illness

New OSHA Smartphone App Gauges Risk of Heat IllnessThe heat is on. And anyone working outdoors or in confined spaces is at risk for heat-related illness, such as heat stroke. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is combating heat illness with an App that gives iPhone and Android users real-time analysis of rising temps.

According to OSHA, the App calculates the heat index and displays a risk level for outdoor workers. The App also lists preventative measures that should be taken to protect workers at risk and the symptoms of heat-related illness.

Learn more and download the App from OSHA.com. Also see Tips for Preventing Heat Illness.

The OSHA App changes to red
in “Extreme Risk” situations.

2 Commonly Overlooked Job Site Hazards and How to Avoid Them

Construction Site SafetyJune is National Safety Month, so we’ll be posting a series of safety tips, policy updates and other useful information to help you and your team stay safe on the job site, in the factory or wherever hazards may be.

Here are two hazards that tend to fly under many project managers’ radars. Both pose serious threats to individuals and are entirely avoidable.

Working Alone

Limited perception and limited number of hands can result in workers overlooking or missing hazards altogether. To minimize the risks associated with working alone, a Hazard Read more

New OSHA Confined Spaces Rule Starts August 3

OHSA Confined Spaces RuleA new rule from Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) regulating how the construction industry operates in confined spaces will go into effect on August 3, 2015.

“This rule will save lives of construction workers,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, Dr. David Michaels.

OSHA says that confined spaces put workers at heightened risk for face life-threatening hazards including toxic substances, Read more

Disaster Recovery Test… Are You Ready?

Past studies by the Department of Homeland Security have confirmed that businesses that reopen within days of a major disaster are up to four times more likely to resume normal operations, even thrive. Many businesses that are unable reopen quickly never reopen at all.

Our friends at Agility Recovery know how to get operational quickly after a disaster. Watch this video and see how their own team performed in a disaster recovery test.

Non-Residential Construction Jumps 32.4% in March

$25 billion in non-residential construction starts in March marked a 32.4% climb over February numbers according to the just released Construction Industry Snapshot by CMD Group, formerly Reed Construction Data. The positive number in March confirms an upward trend in construction spending, but falls short of the same period last year when spending increased by 40.3%. For comparison, the long-term February-to-March increase has been 6.0%. See the full report from CMD here.

Non-Residential Construction Jumps 32.4% in March

Graph courtesy of CMD Group

5 Tips for Better Subcontractor Management in Construction

Construction JobsSubcontractors have become the norm at construction sites. The benefits to construction firms are plenty. But so are the risks. On the surface, a quality sub should make your job easier. Alternately, a sub-quality sub can put your entire operation in jeopardy. As you weigh the pros and cons of using subcontractors on the jobsite, here’s what some construction industry experts are saying as to how you can get the most out of these relationships and mitigate risk at the same time.

1. Prequalification

The only risk you assume here is time lost to vetting an unqualified sub. Take the time to Read more

Top 5 States for Construction as a Percentage of State GDP

Top 5 States for Construction as a Percentage of State GDPPrivate construction can have a tremendous impact on a state’s economy. A new report by the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) ranks all 50 states based on their contribution to state gross domestic product.

In 1997 and 1998, construction accounted for 6.14% of national GDP. That number declined dramatically the following year and has risen slowly ever since. In 2013, the most recent year for this data, construction was 3.73% of national GDP. That number does not include related costs such as transportation, the demand for building materials, financial services or subsequent purchases from buyers. These additional costs add as much as 2 to 3% making construction even more Read more