Methods for Using Narrative Text from Injury Reports to Identify Factors Contributing to Construction Injury

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BackgroundSeveral methods exist for classifying injuries from written text, thereby identifying possible points of intervention. We describe an innovative method for such classification.MethodsUsing Haddon's matrix as a framework, two independent reviewers coded text from over 4,000 injury reports into a qualitative software package to identify factors contributing to injuries sustained during construction of Denver International Airport (DIA). We compared our classification scheme with three others.ResultsThis process created a coded data set, an expanded version of Haddon's matrix adapted for construction injury, and coding rules for interpreting narrative text. Haddon's matrix provides a flexible theoretical framework for coding information about a spectrum of contributing factors.ConclusionsNarrative descriptions from injury reports can provide detail on circumstances surrounding injuries and identify factors contributing to injury. Forms guiding investigators to explicitly consider human, organizational, and environmental factors could foster more complete descriptions of factors contributing to construction injury.

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