Statistics Unions Fall prevention Construction Injury prevention

Study of carpenters finds lower rates of falls from heights

Construction_roof -- Sep13

Durham, NC – The incidence of falls from heights among union carpenters in Washington state dropped more than 80 percent from 1998 to 2008, according to a new study from Duke University.

Researchers used work hour data and workers’ compensation records to determine the rate of work-related injuries caused by falls from heights during the 20-year period. Overall, the rate decreased 82 percent, although the decline was more moderate after 1996, the study abstract states.

By group, the rates of falls from heights were highest among young workers, and older workers had the most days away from work after a fall.

One reason for the decline may be state and federal fall standards, which researchers noted were developed in 1991 and 1994, respectively.

The study was published online Aug. 22 in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine.