Safety and Health Implications of COVID-19 on the United States Construction Industry
AbstractThe construction industry is an essential U.S. business sector, yet it suffers from an elevated risk for work-related fatalities and injuries. The COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated this risk, as well as shone a light on the severe economic/financial/labor burdens and safety/health concerns the sector has faced. As such, the purpose of this review paper is to synthesize the safety and health issues associated with COVID-19 pandemic in the construction industry, and summarize the challenges and opportunities for construction stakeholders in implementing COVID-19 safety and health measures in the construction industry. This paper has explored the challenges in construction and COVID-19; COVID-19 knowledge, preventative behaviors, and risk perception among construction workers; recommendations/practical implications/preventive measures; and COVID-19 education in compliance/guidance, strategies to combat impacts of COVID-19 pandemic, smart digital technologies, and worker wellbeing and work-related quality of life (e.g., mental health). It is warranted that the construction industry needs to take better steps in preparing for future, man-made or natural disaster events, and subsequent acute and chronic disease risk, in order to yield a healthier/safer construction workplace.
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