Risk-Compensation Behaviors on Construction Sites: Demographic and Psychological Determinants
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Risk-compensation behavior refers to the riskier behavior resulting from the perception that the environment has become safer. This study aims to investigate the role of demographics and psychological constructs in predicting construction workers' tendencies to engage in risk-compensation behaviors. Data were collected using a structured questionnaire. The participants include 88 roof tilers in New South Wales, Australia. By using the structural equation modeling (SEM) technique with partial least-squares estimation (PLS), the authors found that workers' tendencies to engage in risk-compensation behaviors are influenced by both demographics (e.g., work experience, education level, and negative safety experience) and psychological constructs (e.g., optimism, internal locus of control, trait worry, and habit), and that the effects of demographics were mediated by the psychological constructs. The findings imply that overconfidence about own capability and perceived power of control over safety issues may encourage risk-compensation behaviors on construction sites. The structural model developed in this study may help people to understand the important mental processes that may influence potential behavioral changes when people perceive that they are more protected.
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