There were 17 construction worker fatalities in Michigan in 2005 - a welcome reduction from the 22 Hardhats who were killed on the job in 2004.
The perennial leading category for worker deaths was once again falls - there were nine in 2005, followed by four electrocutions, three during excavation and one struck-by. It was the lowest fatality count for construction workers in Michigan since 17 workers lost their lives on the job in 1995.
"If there's a good thing about this news," said MIOSHA Construction Safety and Health Supervisor Tony Allam, "it's that there is a fairly large drop in fatalities from 2004 to 2005, even though one worker death is significant and too many. Hopefully this is a trend that will continue."
MIOSHA holds regular construction education and training seminars for contractors and interested parties, and last year focused efforts on excavation and fall protection.
The highest number of fatalities in recent years was 37 Hardhats who died on the job in 1997. In the 1960s, before MIOSHA was instituted, an average of 44 Michigan construction workers were killed on the job every year.