Constructor - July/August 2017 - 15

CEO'S LETTER

Studying the Past to Make Our Future Even Safer

BY STEPHEN E. SANDHERR
AGC CEO

The bottom line is the
best safety programs
are grounded in
hard data and good
research, not bad
assumptions and
exaggerations
designed to support a
particular political or
social agenda.

ONE OF THE MOST pressing challenges our industry faces is how to make sure we continue to
take every possible step to ensure the safety of new and existing workers. The construction
industry, to date, has amassed a good record on this front. During the past 10 years, for example,
construction firms nationwide have taken steps to cut the industry's fatality rate by 10 percent.
But while we are making progress, any number that doesn't start and end with zero is too
high. That is why AGC of America partnered with the Myers-Lawson School of Construction
at Virginia Tech to undertake a comprehensive study of every construction fatality that took
place over a three-year period.
The best way to make sure construction firms of all sizes can put in place the most effective
safety measures is to understand why, when and how construction fatalities occur. Knowing
that allows us to craft safety measures that are designed to address what is actually occurring
on jobsites across the country.
Some of what we found reinforced what we already know. For example falls-from ladders
and other structural elements-account for one-third of U.S. construction fatalities. This is
important because it reinforces our long-standing focus on offering training and holding safety
stand downs addressing fall protection. Indeed, we are working with a number of groups to
craft new training programs focusing on improving ladder safety in the construction industry.
We also reconfirmed that people directly employed by construction firms, as opposed to
contract workers, account for four out of every five construction fatalities. Even as some groups
push the notion that contract workers are at greater risk, this data reinforces the fact construction
firms must craft safety plans that address all workers, regardless of their employment status.
Yet some of our other findings are contrary to a number of long-held assumptions. For
example, while prior research had indicated most construction fatalities occurred in the morning, it turns out that noon is the deadliest hour in construction.
Knowing this, we are now advising construction firms to look at holding toolbox talks and
organizing stretch-and-flex sessions when workers return from the 11 a.m. to noon lunch
break common on most construction sites.
While many prior studies failed to look at the size of firms, it turns out that small construction establishments (those that employ less than 10 people) have the highest fatality rate
among construction firms. This is important because it allows us to put a special emphasis on
working with very small firms to make sure they have access to the kind of safety training
resources that larger firms have.
And we also learned that Hispanic construction workers are not disproportionately the victims of construction fatalities. As a group they represent 24 percent of the workforce nationally
and account for 25 percent of all construction fatalities.
This is important because some groups are suggesting that Hispanic workers are more at
risk than other groups. If allowed to continue, these false assumptions could distract firms
from focusing on their entire workforce, as opposed to specific segments.
The bottom line is the best safety programs are grounded in hard data and good research, not
bad assumptions and exaggerations designed to support a particular political or social agenda.
We sent copies of this new study and our recommendations for improving safety to all
member firms in April. In addition, we are shared this report with the other associations and
trade groups that represent home builders and other construction firms. And we made this
report and our recommendations available for all to see, free, on our website, www.agc.org.
The bottom line is no wisdom or insight should be proprietary when it comes to the safety of
construction workers. We all share a common goal: getting to zero construction fatalities. This
report offers the kind of data and recommendations needed to help firms achieve that goal. ◆

To access the safety study directly, please visit http://bit.ly/2oyaBXK.
@Constr uctor Ma g

J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 7 | www.constructormagazine.com 15


http://www.agc.org http://www.bit.ly/2oyaBXK http://www.constructormagazine.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Constructor - July/August 2017

Editor’s Note
President’s Message
Ceo’s Letter
Automation on the Jobsite
Simonson Says
Students Pave the Way for a Bright Construction Future
A Diversified Portfolio
Deadline for OSHA Crane Operator Certification and Qualification Approaches
Chapter Connection
Changes to Immigration Policy Could Impact Contractors
Agc in Action
Be Wreck-Less
Raze the Roof
2017 Construction Safety Excellence Award Winners
Huddleston Elementary School Renovation Project Grabs 2017 Alliant Build America Award
Inside Agc
Legislative and Regulatory News
Senior Counsel
Technology Toolbox
Westport Presbyterian Church Reconstruction Project Secures 2017 Alliant Build America Award
2017 Regional Resource Guide - A Special Advertising Section
Products & Services Marketplace
Index to Advertisers
Final Inspection
Constructor - July/August 2017 - intro
Constructor - July/August 2017 - cover1
Constructor - July/August 2017 - cover2
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 3
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 4
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 5
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 6
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 7
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 8
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 9
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 10
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Editor’s Note
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 12
Constructor - July/August 2017 - President’s Message
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 14
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Ceo’s Letter
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Automation on the Jobsite
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 17
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 18
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 19
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 20
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 21
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 22
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Simonson Says
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Students Pave the Way for a Bright Construction Future
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 25
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 26
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 27
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 28
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 29
Constructor - July/August 2017 - A Diversified Portfolio
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 31
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 32
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 33
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 34
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 35
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Deadline for OSHA Crane Operator Certification and Qualification Approaches
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 37
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 38
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Chapter Connection
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Changes to Immigration Policy Could Impact Contractors
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 41
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 42
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 43
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Agc in Action
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 45
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Be Wreck-Less
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 47
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Raze the Roof
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 49
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 50
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 51
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 2017 Construction Safety Excellence Award Winners
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 53
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 54
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Huddleston Elementary School Renovation Project Grabs 2017 Alliant Build America Award
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 56
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 57
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Inside Agc
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 59
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 60
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Legislative and Regulatory News
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Senior Counsel
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 63
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 64
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Technology Toolbox
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Westport Presbyterian Church Reconstruction Project Secures 2017 Alliant Build America Award
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 67
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 2017 Regional Resource Guide - A Special Advertising Section
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 69
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 70
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 71
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 72
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 73
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 74
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 75
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 76
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Constructor - July/August 2017 - 131
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Constructor - July/August 2017 - 133
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 134
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 135
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 136
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 137
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 138
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 139
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 140
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 141
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 142
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 143
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Products & Services Marketplace
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 145
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 146
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 147
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Index to Advertisers
Constructor - July/August 2017 - 149
Constructor - July/August 2017 - Final Inspection
Constructor - July/August 2017 - cover3
Constructor - July/August 2017 - cover4
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