In addition to the human tragedy of worker injury and death, accidents cost the construction industry big bucks. Employers across all industries pay about $1 billion (that’s billion with a “b”) weekly in direct worker’s compensation costs, OSHA estimates. As one of the ten most hazardous occupations in the U.S., many of those costs are borne by construction.
The costs of workers’ comp payments, medical expenses and legal services are only part of the financial burden. OSHA notes that indirect costs to employers include: “training replacement employees, accident investigation and implementation of corrective measures, lost productivity, repairs of damaged equipment and property, and costs associated with lower employee morale and absenteeism.”
Recognizing the human suffering and financial loss of jobsite accidents, more developers and contractors are turning to modular construction as a safer alternative to full construction on site. 58 percent of modular users report that enhanced safety is a key driver of their decision to use modular construction, notes the Modular Building Institute.
When comparing the relative safety of a typical building construction site with a factory making modular building components, it all comes down to two words: controlled versus uncontrolled.
On a jobsite, environmental conditions are largely uncontrolled; Workers often must deal with adverse weather and variable lighting. In contrast, modern building component factories – such as for pre-fab bathrooms – have strict environmental controls and consistent, bright overhead lighting.
Additionally, safety measures are easy to monitor and can be strictly imposed in a manufacturing facility. Modular bathrooms are constructed at ground level, reducing risks from working at heights.
Removing bathroom construction from the jobsite reduces workers comp rates, decreases the risk of OSHA violations and has the potential to reduce general liability insurance.