When the day is done, all those in construction have the right to head home in the same shape as they arrived at work—or better. But as everyone knows, reality is not so forgiving. Each year, the industry kills or injures its people in numbingly familiar ways and 2002 was no exception. Falls, electrocutions, falling objects, trench cave-ins, equipment mishaps and vehicular accidents combined to kill hundreds of people on the job.
In its reporting, ENR tries to call the industry’s attention to best practices as well as to the tragic results of even a moment’s inadvertence. Many industry organizations and companies make safety the highest priority because it is the right thing to do and, more secondarily, makes good business sense. As the year ends, we hope that the construction industry rededicates itself to making a bigger dent in accidents, injuries and fatalities. A good place to start is not letting the press of schedule push people into unsafe practices.