Construction accident causality: learning from different countries and differing consequences
journal contributionposted on 10.06.2015, 10:31 by Alistair Gibb, Helen Lingard, Michael Behm, Tracy Cooke
Fundamental questions remain about the practical value and generalizability of accident causation frameworks for explaining construction accidents. Relevant causality literature is reviewed; three research projects compared and implications of accident causation theories for accident investigation and analysis discussed, particularly for accidents with differing consequences and in different national contexts. The effectiveness of the UK accident causality framework ConAC (Construction Accident Causality) in identifying occupational accident causes in different industry contexts (Australia and the USA) is evaluated; and the implications of the choice of theoretical framework in the analysis of construction accident causation considered. The ConAC framework was developed from a real-time analysis of 100 relatively minor construction accidents. The Australian study used this framework to analyse the National Coroners reports of 258 construction fatalities and the USA study used it to develop research instruments for interviews regarding 27 construction accidents of varying consequences. The results suggest that the ConAC framework is helpful for the analysis of the causes of accidents with outcomes of differing severity. The studies also suggest that it has international applicability despite differing occupational health and safety legislative contexts and industrial arrangements. Furthermore, significant learning can be obtained from considering underlying causes of accidents.
- Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering