Fatal Injuries in Private Construction Rose 4 Percent in 2015 to 937

February 2017

In 2014 the number was 899. The 2015 total for construction was the highest since 2008 and was primarily led by an increase in fatal injuries among specialty trade contractors, though the rate for construction remained statistically unchanged. The largest increase among specialty trade contractors involved foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors whose fatal injury total rose 27 percent to 231 fatal injuries in 2015 from 182 in 2014, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Several construction occupations recorded their highest fatality total in years, including construction laborers (highest since 2008); carpenters (2009); electricians (2009); and plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters (2003).
Falls to a lower level accounted for 81 percent of all fatal falls. Of those cases where the height of the fall was known, more than two-fifths of fatal falls occurred from 15 feet or lower. Fatal falls to a lower level accounted for nearly 40 percent of fatal work injuries in the private construction industry in 2015.