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The Most Dangerous Jobs (According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics)

August 15, 2022

The Most Dangerous Jobs (According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics)

In the latest National Census of Fatal Occupational Industries, published in December 2021, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there were 4,764 work-related fatalities recorded nationwide in 2020, a 10.7 percent decrease from 2019. This figure represents a fatal work injury rate of 3.4 fatalities per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers or one worker death from work injuries every 111 minutes. 2020 had the lowest annual number of work fatalities since 2013. 

Highest-Risk Occupations

By fatal work injury rates per 100,000 FTEs, the most dangerous occupations or industries in the U.S. include:

  • Fishing and hunting industry, with a fatal work injury rate of approximately 130
  • The logging industry, with a fatal work injury rate of about 90
  • Roofers, with a fatal work injury of about 45
  • Construction industry/handymen, with a fatal work injury rate of just over 40
  • Pilots and flight engineers, with a fatal work injury rate of about 35
  • Waste collection, also with a fatal work injury rate of around 35
  • Iron and steelworkers, with a fatal work injury rate of approximately 35
  • Truck and delivery drivers, with a fatal work injury rate of just under 30

Workers in the materials transportation, construction, and extraction industries accounted for nearly half of all fatal occupational injuries in the U.S. in 2020. 

Read more: Top Workplace Injuries in Washington State

Workplace Fatality Statistics

Other notable workplace fatality statistics from the report include:

  • Fatalities in healthcare support occupations increased by 15.8 percent from 2019
  • Fatal occupational injuries suffered by law enforcement workers increased by 18.6 percent from 2019
  • The share of Hispanic/Latino workers who suffered fatal work injuries increased from 20.4 percent in 2019 to 22.5 percent in 2020; the fatality rate for Hispanic or Latino workers was 4.5 deaths per FTEs, an increase from 4.2 in 2019
  • Black and African American workers had a 14.7 percent decrease in occupational fatalities from 2019 to 2020
  • Workers between the ages of 45 and 54 suffered the lowest rate of workplace fatalities in 2020 for this age group since 1992
  • Although only accounting for 8.1 percent of total occupational fatalities, women accounted for more than 16 percent of workplace homicides in 2020

Top Workplace Accidents

The BLS found that the most frequent type of workplace accident in 2020 was transportation incidents, which include aviation accidents, railroad accidents, boating accidents, motor vehicle accidents, and pedestrian accidents. Other top workplace accidents include:

  • Slip and fall, trip and falls, and falls from heights
  • Incidents of violence and animal attacks
  • Contact with objects or equipment, including being struck by wheeled equipment, struck by falling or flying objects, or being caught in equipment or machinery
  • Exposure to harmful substances or environmental/weather conditions
  • Fires and explosions

Read more: What You Need To Know About Workers’ Compensation and the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Washington State

Most Frequent Safety Violations

In addition, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration also published their top 10 most cited safety violations for the 2021 fiscal year, which include:

  • Construction fall protection equipment
  • Respiratory protection equipment
  • Construction ladders
  • Safety communication
  • Scaffolding
  • Construction fall protection training 
  • Lockout/tagout equipment
  • Construction eye and face protection equipment
  • Powered industrial truck maintenance and safety
  • Machinery and machine guardian maintenance and safety

Contact a Rochester Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Workplace Injury Case in Washington State

Were you or a loved one injured due to a workplace accident in Washington State? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Smith Duran represent clients injured in Olympia, Lakewood, Auburn, and University Place. Call (360) 273-5941 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 10118 Highway 12 SW, Rochester, WA, 98579, as well as offices in Tacoma.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.

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