Focus On Safety Necessary For Civil Engineers
Safety is something that every workplace needs to focus on. In the civil engineering field, professional engineers must create projects that are both functional and safe. When they commit an unethical, unprofessional, or illegal act, they can face licensing issues.
Because of this, experts believe that the civil engineering curriculum in United States colleges needs to include more information about workplace safety. That’s because many civil engineers work in the construction industry, which is the most dangerous industry. In 2019, the industry saw more than 1,000 deaths and 200,000 reported injuries—more than any other industry. This means there is a lot of room for improvement.
Injuries in the construction industry come with a high price. When workers miss more than five days of work, this costs the industry more than $10 billion a year. Making matters worse is that there is little communication about it. There is also minimal education and training about how to reduce the number of hazards in the industry. It’s a terrible situation all around.
There is a difference in safety when it comes to company size. Larger companies tend to make safety more of a priority. Small- and medium-sized companies, on the other hand, are less likely to promote safety on job sites. With the construction and civil engineering industries growing at rapid paces, things will only get worse without intervention.
Identifying the Issue
Civil engineers have a responsibility to influence safety through their design choices. Even the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Code of Ethics acknowledges this. However, the role of safety is not discussed much during an engineering student’s undergraduate education. It needs to be, though, so that engineers are poised for success as they move into their future careers.
Resolving the Issue
There needs to be more focus on safety at the undergraduate level, so why not just mandate that programs add an additional course? It’s much more complicated than that. Adding a safety class would require a college to drop a class from its undergraduate civil engineering curriculum. Since all the engineering courses have some value, this would be a difficult thing to do. Plus, they have to meet university or Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) requirements. And with the trend toward reducing the number of credit hours required to graduate—with some capped at 120 hours—adding another course is just not feasible.
Keep Your License With Help From a Tampa Professional Engineers Licensing Lawyer
All licensed professionals need to know how to stay safe while on the job, and professional engineers are no exception. Their job is to create safe buildings, bridges, walkways, and other structures for the public.
Civil engineers need to focus on safety and ethics. Those who don’t may face legal issues. Seek help from Tampa professional engineers licensing lawyer David P. Rankin. I have decades of experience helping professionals keep their licenses and have represented more than 100 professional engineers before the Florida Board of Professional Engineers. To schedule a consultation, fill out the online form or call (813) 968-6633.