Impact of occupational hazards in the building construction industry: a case study of Bobedie Construction Company in Lwengo District, Uganda
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Building construction industry is one of the fastest growing industries in Lwengo town. Due to increased urbanization and population growth, it employs more people in order to meet the housing demands for economic development. However there are various occupational hazards related to the industry that makes it to be considered the most dangerous. The objectives of the research study were ; (i) to identify various occupational hazards faced by construction workers; (ii) to assess the nature of occupational health and safety being implemented and (iii) to determine people’s perception towards occupational health and safety. Descriptive research was used whereby a survey was conducted and data collected using both qualitative and quantitative approaches using questionnaires and interviews and data was analyzed using SPSS. The study found out that 80% of the workers had ever experienced hazards such as cuts and wounds, falling objects, noise and 20% hazard never experienced any. The study showed that the health and safety procedures were very high at the studied building construction site whereby 94% of the sample were sensitized, 92% given protective equipment and people had a positive perception towards occupational health and safety. However studies from minor construction sites around Lwengo town showed that there were very low levels of health and safety where by 84% of the workers were not sensitized about occupational health and safety, were not given personal protective equipment and had unsafe working environment. This indicated that health and safety was being implemented at major construction sites due to pressure from the clients and there was limited supervision by district officials. The identified hazards affected the workers in various ways that is, the hazards led to absenteeism (70%), low productivity (62%) poor performance (56%), sleep disorders (34%) and others. It was concluded that there are always occupational hazards that affect the wellbeing of workers at different construction sites regardless the size however implementation of health and safety procedures minimizes the impacts. It was recommended that safety and health issues be given priority in development issues and building construction industry and joint efforts should be made to ensure compliance with law.