Construction worker

Construction worker
Construction worker
Carpenter at work in Tennessee, June 1942
Activity sectors Construction
Competencies Manual dexterity, strength

A construction worker or builder is a professional, tradesman, or labourer who directly participates in the physical construction of infrastructure.


Construction trades

The division of labour of construction encompasses a diverse range of specialized skills, as well as manual labour.

Ironworkers surprised by photographer, while erecting the steel frame of a new building, at the Massachusetts General Hospital, USA
  • Carpet layer, one who specializes in laying carpet
  • Concrete finisher, a tradesman who works with concrete, which includes placing, finishing, protecting and repairing concrete in construction projects.[1]
  • Electrician, a tradesman specializing in electrical wiring of buildings and related equipment. Electricians may be employed in the construction of new buildings or maintenance of existing electrical infrastructure.[4]
  • Fencer, a tradesman who builds fences
  • Ironworker (or steel erector), a tradesman who erects or dismantles structural steel frames. Structural steel installation is usually crane-assisted. Workers rely on mobile, elevated platforms or scissor lifts. Ironworkers bolt the steelwork together using various tools, power tools and manual tools.[5][6]
  • Laborer, a skilled worker proficient with pneumatic tools, hand tools, blasting, smaller heavy equipment. Laborers may also assist other tradesmen.
  • Landscaper, a tradesmen who specializes in landscaping
  • Painter and decorator, a tradesman responsible for the painting and decorating of buildings, and is also known as a decorator or house painter.[7]
  • Pipefitter (or steamfitter), a person who lays out, assembles, fabricates, maintains, and repairs large-sized piping systems capable of enabling high-pressure flow.[10]
  • Steel fixer, a tradesman who positions and secures reinforcing bars and mesh used to reinforce concrete on construction projects.[11][12]
  • Tiler, a tradesmen who fits tile

Construction site safety

A construction worker with column reinforcement steel

Hazards to construction workers

Construction is the most dangerous land-based, non-military industry.[citation needed] In the European Union, the rate of fatal accidents is nearly 13 per 100,000 workers, compared with an average of 5 per 100,000 workers across all work sectors.[15][16]

Among the many work-related occupational safety and health hazards that construction workers face are falls from heights, falls from vehicles, electrocution, and burial during earthworks operations. Workers may also be exposed to asbestos, dangerous solvents, noise pollution, and particulates such as cement dust.

Personal protective equipment

Hard hats and steel-toe boots are perhaps the most common personal protective equipment worn by construction workers. A risk assessment may deem that other protective equipment is appropriate, such as gloves, goggles, or high-visibility clothing.[17]

A construction worker dons a high-visibility, fluorescent vest.

See also


  1. ^ a b Richard T. Kreh (2003). Masonry Skills. Thomson Delmar Learning. ISBN 0766859363. 
  2. ^ Byron W. Maguire (1988). Carpentry in Commercial Construction. Craftsman Book Company. ISBN 0934041334. 
  3. ^ V. J. Davies, Ken Tomasin (1996). Construction Safety Handbook. Thomas Telford. ISBN 0-7277-2519-X. 
  4. ^ Roger Jones (2004). Electrician. Trotman Publishing. ISBN 0856609978. 
  5. ^ Len F. Webster (1997). "Steel+erector"#v=onepage&q=%22Steel%20erector%22 The Wiley Dictionary of Civil Engineering and Construction. Wiley-Interscience. ISBN 0471181153."Steel+erector"#v=onepage&q=%22Steel%20erector%22. 
  6. ^ M.Y.H. Bangash (2000). Structural Detailing in Steel. Thomas Telford. ISBN 0727728504. 
  7. ^ Alf Fulcher (2005). Painting and Decorating. Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 1405112549. 
  8. ^ Brian F. Pegg, William D. Stagg (2007). Plastering. Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 1-4051-5604-X. 
  9. ^ Howard C. Massey (1998). Plumber's Handbook. Craftsman Book Company. ISBN 1572180560. 
  10. ^ Calin M. Popescu, Kan Phaobunjong, Nuntapong Ovararin (2003). Estimating Building Costs. CRC Press. ISBN 0824740866. 
  11. ^ Alan Charles Twort, Gordon J. Rees (2003). Civil Engineering Project Management. Elsevier. ISBN 0750657316. 
  12. ^ Arthur Horace (1988). Reinforced Concrete Design to Bs8110: Simply Explained. Spon Press. ISBN 0419145508. 
  13. ^ Lincoln Electric (1994). The Procedure Handbook of Arc Welding. Cleveland: Lincoln Electric. ISBN 99949-25-82-2.
  14. ^ Weman, Klas (2003). Welding processes handbook. New York: CRC Press LLC. ISBN 0-8493-1773-8.
  15. ^ Eurostat Construction Accident statistics
  16. ^ Construction Safety Management Systems. ISBN 0415300630. 
  17. ^ Dalby, Joseph (1998-02-01). EU Law for the Construction Industry. Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 0-632-04067-X. 

Further reading

  • Reese, Charles D.; Eidson, James Vernon (2006). Handbook of OSHA Construction Safety and Health (2nd ed.). Boca Raton: CRC Press. ISBN 9780849365461. OCLC 61859927. 

External links

Media related to Construction workers at Wikimedia Commons

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