Common construction safety violations

Construction law covers issues that fall under state, local, and federal jurisdictions. Federal statutes impose worksite, hiring, and safety practices such as those governed by OSHA. Texas may impose other regulations. Lastly, there can be county and city ordinances geared towards topics like zoning and noise.

Looking at common construction safety violations

It can be hard to manage a site that’s 100 percent safe. Year to year, construction site violations tend to stay consistent and always starting with the same number one problem.


No matter how much or how few precautions to prevent falls, this category always ends up at the top.

Any task performed at six feet or higher must use a safety net, guard rail system, or personal arrest system. Interestingly, these precautions do not take into account the most common reasons for falls on construction sites.

• Trenches, wells, skylights, pits, shafts; pretty much any opening that’s obstructed or not safely blocked
• Unprotected walkways, runways and ramps
• Chutes and other wall openings


Scaffolding is another major cause of common construction safety violations. Construction law requires employers to manage risks common to supported and suspended scaffolding.

OSHA requires employers to train workers on safety protocols for using scaffolds. Employers must present training certification upon request by OSHA or other governing bodies.


Ladders come with a range of safety precautions. Yet, despite construction law, none of them prevent accidents and injuries. Sites use improper ladders with the wrong step spacing or use the wrong extension trestle ladders. There are oversights like the absence of skid-resistant ladders and defects such as rungs and steps that are not level, parallel, or spaced uniformly.

OSHA Top Violations

OSHA maintains the main causes of accidents and injuries on construction sites. All job sites are responsible by construction law to comply with OSHA to protect their workers.

• Fall protection
• Hazard communication
• Industrial power trucks
• Lack of PPE
• Ladders
• Machine guarding
• Respiratory protection
• Scaffolding
• Tagout/Lockout

Construction projects are often under tight scheduling and budget crunches. It’s not unusual — intentional or not — to overlook training and safety measures to meet objectives. It’s never a good idea to ignore risk management. It can lead to injury and legal complications.