Every seven seconds, a worker in the United States suffers an injury. That equates to 12,600 a day, 88,500 a week and 4.6 million every year, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). But workplace accidents also claim thousands of lives each year.
The most recent data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows there were 5,250 workplace deaths in 2017, which is the most recent information available. The NSC says workplace safety efforts are treading water as the fatal work injury rate remains at 3.5 for every 100,000 workers.
What causes most workplace deaths?
Most fatalities among workers are related to transportation, as 2,000 deaths involved motor vehicle accidents or 40% of total fatalities. Next, at 17%, are incidents involving workers coming into contact with objects and equipment.
The top three nonfatal injuries which force employees to miss work are; strains, sprains and tears, soreness or pain, and cuts, lacerations or punctures. The NSC says 104 million production days were lost due to work-related injuries in 2017.
Top five most dangerous professions
Some of the most dangerous jobs are in the steel industry, construction, landscaping and farming, but the top five industries showing the highest injury rates per 100,000 workers are:
- Logging industry: 97.6
- Fishing industry: 77.4
- Aircraft pilots and flight engineers: 58.9
- Roofers: 51.5
- Refuse and recycling workers: 44.3
Report unsafe working conditions
Under state and federal laws, companies must provide a safe working environment. Dangerous conditions should be reported to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) as well as the employer.
Companies must work to reduce or eliminate health and safety hazards and provide safety training when necessary. If you are injured, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney here in Pennsylvania can provide critical assistance, from submitting a claim through the appeals process if a claim is denied.