Workplace fatalities are increasing. In 2018, a total of 5,250 people died at the workplace, representing a slight statistical rise from 2017. Many employees died in transportation accidents, and others lost their lives to incidents involving dangerous equipment. This data from CNBC and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) allows us to determine the 10 most dangerous jobs in America.
Keep reading to learn what they are!
#10 – Landscaping, Lawn Service, and Groundskeeping
While you might be imagining accidents with lawnmowers or other equipment, most of the fatalities in this field are related to transportation. Landscapers spend much of their time traveling between worksites and suffer 20.2 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. In 2018, landscapers sustained 142 fatal injuries and 1,990 non-fatal injuries.
#9 – Construction and Extraction
Construction sites are notorious for slips, trips, and falls, as well as incidents involving equipment, but the most dangerous aspect of these jobs is also transportation related. In 2018, construction workers suffered 21 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers, 144 fatal injuries total, and 5,390 non-fatal injuries.
#8 – Structural Iron and Steel
This is a skilled profession with fewer workers than some other occupations on the list, but it is overrepresented in fatal workplace accidents with 23.6 fatalities per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. Most of the industry’s 15 fatal injuries came from falls, which are almost always deadly at the heights where iron and steelworkers complete their jobs. Nevertheless, these workers suffered 800 non-fatal injuries in 2018.
#7 – Farming, Ranching, and Agriculture
These workers are often trained on the spot and miss important safety memos. Further, they work outside and spend time traveling from farm to farm. In 2018, 257 agricultural workers died and 280 of them were injured for an alarming rate of 24.7 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. Most fatal accidents were related to transportation.
#6 – Trucking and Traveling Sales
By now, you are probably noticing a trend. Transportation incidents account for the majority (40%) of fatal workplace accidents. Unsurprisingly, workers who travel or drive for a living are more susceptible to this type of accident. In 2018, truck drivers and traveling salespeople had the highest number of fatalities at 966. A total of 78,520 people was injured and there were 26 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers.
#5 – Refuse and Recyclable Materials
If you’ve ever seen a garbage truck, you’ve had a glimpse into the working conditions of refuse and recyclable materials collectors. These workers spend much of their time traveling in large vehicles, which puts them at an increased risk for transportation incidents. They also work around dangerous equipment and hazardous materials. In 2018, 37 workers passed away, 1,490 were injured, and the industry faced 44.3 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers.
#4 – Roofing
For many roofers, a fall can be fatal. These workers install or repair roofs, often at great heights and in adverse weather conditions. Slips, trips, and falls are the leading causes of death in this industry, which lost 96 workers to fatal accidents in 2018. Another 2,060 roofers were injured, and the field saw 51.5 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers.
#3 – Aircraft Pilots and Flight Engineers
Plane crashes account for most fatal injuries in this career path. In 2018, most accidents occurred in the private aviation sector and 70 workers were killed, leading to a rate of 58.9 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. Additionally, 490 pilots and flight engineers were injured.
#2 – Commercial Fishing
Professional fishers are at sea for long periods and must complete grueling physical labor. They also use nets and traps, which can knock workers off boats and lead to drownings. Transportation incidents, or boat crashes, account for most fatal injuries in this industry. In 2018, 8 workers died, creating a high rate of 77.4 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. All reported injuries ended in death.
#1 – Logging
By chopping down trees, loggers put themselves at risk of being hit by falling objects or enduring equipment accidents. Workers of all injuries have a 3.5 in 100,000 chance of being fatally injured at the workplace, but the risk for loggers is 28 times higher with a rate of 97.6 fatal injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. In 2018, 74 loggers died and 1,040 sustained non-fatal injuries.
What To Do if You Lose a Loved One or Are Injured At Work?
Injuries and fatalities from workplace accidents are typically covered by workers’ compensation insurance. Unfortunately, because these injuries are so dangerous, coverage is more expensive for employers to purchase. As a result, many employers act illegally to keep their rates down and many insurers refuse to honor claims.
If you need help getting your workers’ comp benefits after an injury or devastating loss, please contact the Law Offices of Andrew B. Shin today. With diverse backgrounds and over 25 years of collective experience, our attorneys understand what you’re going through and can help you get the compensation you’re entitled to.