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Initiatives for Construction

Construction High-Risk Strategy

Why do we have a High-Risk Strategy (HRS)?

WorkSafeBC reviews historical incidents and claims statistics of all the industry sectors in British Columbia and identified Construction as one of four industries that have significant exposures and a greater risk of injuries and fatalities.

Since 2004, British Columbia has experienced increased levels of construction activity. Approximately $110 billion in construction activity will occur from 2007 to 2014. This ongoing activity requires attention, to ensure reductions in worker exposures, injuries and fatalities.

Key Performance Indicators (KPI) are configured each year to assess the changes throughout the industry and determine which areas require attention. Although progress has been achieved over the past 6 years, we need to ensure that the reductions and successes continue into the future.

18 Classification Units (with links to the Mechanisms of Injury Summary Sheets)
721005 Demolition *721024 Framing/Residential Forming 721043 Plumbing & Heating
721009, 721010, 721011 Concrete Pumping, Placing or Cutting *721027 House Construction *721049 Siding and Gutter Installation
721012 Concrete Reinforcing 721028 Building Construction *721051 Steep Slope Roofing
721013 Construction Labour Supply 721031 Land Clearing 721052 Structural Concrete Forming
721018 Drywalling 721036 Low Slope Roofing 722005 Steel Frame Erection
721022 Fire and Flood Restoration *721042 Plastering or Stucco Work *Residential Wood Frame Construction
summary of all 5 * CUs combined
Person Years (one person-year is the equivalent of one person working part or full-time all year)

Construction continues to play a key role in British Columbia's economy and employs a large number of people throughout the province - representing approximately 32,000 employers, 155,000 workers, and about 8% of the provincial workforce. Even with the decline in construction during 2009, employment has grown 34% since 2004.This is three times the growth of all other industries combined and includes many young and new workers.

Young workers represent approximately 15% of the entire construction workforce. However, they account for 25% of all construction injury claims - indicating that young workers are at a greater risk of injury than their more experienced counterparts.

Non-Health Care Only Claims (Non-HCO - a claim with a first benefit in the year of injury or in the first three months following the year of injury)

Claims have steadily increased in line with employment. However, the contribution has been declining over the past four years from 6.4% in 2006 to 4.6% in 2009. We want these reductions to continue. The following links list tools, publications, and other resources to help prevent injuries from the top three types of accidents:

  1. Falls from Elevation
  2. Struck by/against object
  3. Musculoskeletal Injuries (Overexertion)

Fatalities continue to be high in the industry. These are primarily attributed to the "Disease " and "Other Injury " categories - of 97 fatalities from 2010 to 2012, 59% in the 19 HRS CUs, 65% asbestos exposure, and 16% falls.

Serious Injury Rate (the number of serious injury claims in a given year divided by the number of person years in a given year, multiplied by 100)

The serious injury rate is calculated as follows:

The denominator: The number of person-years of WorkSafeBC-covered employment.

The numerator: Claims with at least one of the following criteria:

  • The claimant received at least 28 days of wage-loss benefits during that period
  • The claimant required extensive hospitalization or medical services
  • The claim is a fatality
  • The claim met one of 275 specific diagnostic codes identified by WorkSafeBC's medical and occupational safety professionals as being the most life-threatening or life-altering conditions of those listed in the ninth revision of the International Classification of Diseases, developed by the World Health Organization. These codes are commonly referred to as ICD-9s.

Health-care-only claims are excluded from the calculation of the serious injury rate.

The industry has been able to make a significant impact on the rate of serious injuries over the past 5 years and this will continue to be a primary focus in 2010. The goal is maintain the serious injury rate below 2.00 and push it down further.

"Prime Contractors: How Do You Measure Up?" Campaign

The "Prime Contractor: How do you measure up?" Campaign was designed to provide a structured and consistent method to measure if Prime Contractors are reasonably fulfilling their legal duties and responsibilities across seven key areas.

Click on the links below for additional information on the "How do you Measure up?" campaign.

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