The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Construction Program works with partners in industry, labor, trade associations, academia, professional organizations, and other government organizations. The program focuses on construction worker safety and health in these areas:
- Preventing injuries and fatalities related to falls and struck-by incidents
- Reducing hearing loss among workers
- Reducing hazardous respiratory exposures among workers, especially to crystalline silica
- Reducing injuries and musculoskeletal disorders related to emerging or new technologies
- Raise awareness of evidence-based ways to prevent falls in the construction industry:
- Promote the NIOSH research-based national Campaign to Prevent Falls in Construction, and the Safety Stand-Down.
- Evaluate the success of the Campaign in collaboration with the NIOSH-funded Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
- Develop fall prevention tools, educational materials, trainings, and other resources and disseminate through electronic, web, and social media.
- Provide information, tools, and resources to advance hearing loss prevention efforts, encourage manufacturers to design and produce quieter equipment while encouraging companies to purchase or rent quieter machinery.
- Increase availability and use of silica dust controls. The Program focuses on the tasks with common and high silica exposures, such as tuckpointing and installing natural or engineered stone countertops.
- Increase the availability and use of effective interventions to improve practice (research-to-practice or r2p) in the construction industry.
- Provided data and input to OSHA in support of their effort to expand Table 1pdf iconexternal icon (silica controls) of the silica standard that requires employers to protect construction workers from exposure to respirable crystalline silica.
- Used recommendations from the external peer review of the construction program to update internal research projects.
- Developed informational resources, including short videos, to reduce the significant problem of opioid misuse and overdose deaths among construction workers.
- Published science blogs on important construction issues, including trenching safety, wearable construction devices, fall prevention and the National Campaign, and safety culture.
- Shared NIOSH construction research with key stakeholders at various annual national construction safety and health expos, including CONEXPO-CON/AGG and the International Builders’ Show®.
- Published several journal articles and reports on fallspdf iconexternal icon, trenchingpdf iconexternal icon, silicapdf iconexternal icon, ergonomics, exoskeletons, and emerging technologies.
- Developed COVID-19 guidance for the construction industry.
- Develop videos, blogs, infographics, and other communication products targeting small construction businesses and populations at disproportionate risk of injuries, illnesses, and fatalities.
- Research the use of robotics, exoskeletons, or other emerging technologies in construction to determine impact on health and safety. Develop
- communication products on some of these topics.
- Work with key partners on a series of workshops on Prevention through Design (PtD) for the Construction Sector.
- Conduct a series of webinars on COVID-19 for construction stakeholders and partners.
Mention of any company or product does not constitute endorsement by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The Construction Program aims to eliminate work-related injuries, diseases, and fatalities among construction workers. This snapshot shows recent accomplishments and upcoming work.
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1992-2018 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries. Numbers are from the online CFOI database.
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