How to Minimize Risk through Construction Technology

July 19, 2021

When it comes to technology, insurance folks tend to focus on how it can increase exposures, especially in a world of newsworthy cyber-attacks. Rarely do we see it as a solution to an exposure. Yes, a solution.

Last year, while walking outside a strip mall, I saw a worker block off an area of sidewalk that needed repair. This same worker took out a cell phone and snapped a picture of the sign and closed off area from several different angles. We hear risk managers tell their employees on a regular basis to follow a similar procedure, yet many filed claims don’t contain this exact piece of evidence.

Something as simple as a few photos could prove the client did their due diligence, taking any subjectivity out of whether their actions in quarantining the area were appropriate. This is just one example of how technology can improve a risk management program.

While using a cell phone might seem commonplace, there are many other technologies to consider for your risk management program and accident investigation protocols. Some of those technologies include:

  1. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or Drones – allow construction companies to not only keep a larger eye on worksites, but avoid sending workers into dangerous situations by using a drone for hard to reach or small spaces instead.

  2. Tower Crane Cameras – solve the problem of poor visibility in bad lighting or weather conditions, as well as minimize injury potential to the operator of the crane.

  3. Prevention thru Design – allows general contractors and architects to utilize advanced modeling software and engineer out safety issues before becoming a legitimate problem once construction has started.

Other technologies include GPS devices, wearables, personal driving cameras, security cameras and telematic devices. To optimize the use of this equipment for loss prevention, identify how it can impact your risk management program, and then set performance expectations. Internal investigation forms should require your investigator to look for technology and how to use it in a meaningful manner. For instance, if an individual indicates something was captured on camera, can your employee secure their contact information and obtain a copy of the video?

Not only can technology help prevent accidents and reduce risk, it can also make companies efficient and up-to-date, proving to clients that modern methods and innovation are top priorities.

For more ways to leverage technology in your risk management program, contact your local MMA advisor.