While there are some jobs that require sitting down in front of a computer
screen for eight hours a day, there are others where the inherent danger
of injury or fatality is an everyday reality. The data was collected by
the U.S. Census, Department of Labor, the Occupational Safety and Health
Administration (OSHA), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(CDC). Along with the statistics, our New York City
workers’ compensation attorney offers advice on how to reduce the number of injuries and fatalities
regarding each type of occupation.
The following are the 10 most dangerous jobs in the United States:
Construction workers – Whether it’s working at great heights or outdoors in extreme
weather conditions, construction is physically demanding. Out of the 4,585
on-the-job fatalities in 2013, 828 – or 18% – were from the
construction industry. Falls were the leading cause of death, followed
by being struck by objects, electrocutions and being caught in between objects.
Advice: Workers should always inspect tools and equipment prior to use. At the
end of each day, they should pack up and adequately store equipment, preventing
others from tripping over them and causing an injury.
Agricultural workers – 113 people, less than 20 years old, die annual from farm-related injuries
on average. Most of these fatal injuries involved heavy machinery and
Advice: Tractors should all be equipped with Roll-Over Protective Structures (ROPS)
to prevent overturns and rollovers. Don’t’ wear loose clothing
around work area or equipment.
Truck drivers – In 2014, large trucks were involved in 137,730 crashes in the United States,
resulting in 70,257 injuries and 4,033 deaths. Truck drivers are allowed
to drive up to 11 hours per stretch and up to 77 hours over a week. However,
statistics have indicated that many drivers work longer than required.
Advice: Drivers should thoroughly check their vehicle each day before they embark
on their journey. Since about 1/3 of all fatal work-zone accidents involve
large trucks, drivers should always take their time going through interstate
Mining machine operators – Miners face many dangers such as cave-ins, flooding, elevator problems,
lung and respiratory disease due to the particles floating around in mines.
Advice: Always wear protective gear and be alert for any emanate danger, such
as cave collapses.
Trash collectors – The main contributor to deaths is the garbage truck itself, since hazardous
materials such as broken glass, medical waste, corrosive chemicals, and
diseases may accompany solid waste. Inhaling these fumes and place trash
collectors at greater risk of injury.
- Advice: Workers must be careful when handling refuse, by wearing gloves
and masks. Check mirrors of the truck before backing up and communicate
with the workers on foot whenever the vehicle is in motion.
Power Workers – With the responsibility of installing and repairing electrical cables or
wires, this job has suffered more fatalities than both firemen and police
officers. Workers must constantly face towering heights and massive surges
Advice: Always ground equipment, since workers are typically injured or killed
when equipment contacts distribution lines and linemen on the ground are
in contact with that equipment. It’s also best to be thoroughly
educated about this profession, or else mistakes can be fatal.
Roofers – Roofers face a plethora of threats, such as burns, falling from
heights, and injuries from equipment.
Advice: Always wear a safety harness when working. Be aware of the weather, such
as strong winds and thunderstorms.
Aircraft Pilots – Pilots have a great risk of fatality during takeoff and landing.
Those who pilot private planes have higher death rates, since they’re
not as well maintained compared to big commercial planes.
Advice: Have a checklist to look over before taking off. When they’re approaching
inclement weather, it’s best to avoid the chance of putting the
lives of themselves and passengers at risk.
Fishers – Fishers can fall victim to the elements when they’re working in open
water. Fatalities can occur after a vessel disaster, falling overboard
and an injury onboard.
Advice: Practice drills monthly, including how to abandon ship, deal with flooding,
fire and a man going overboard. Always wear a PFD, no matter what the
Logging workers – Since 2009, the death rate for loggers has more than doubled.
Due to the boom in new home construction, the industry is forced to hire
more inexperienced workers who are more susceptible to accidents.
Advice: Always wear protective gear and learn how to properly operate a chainsaw
and how to maintain its peak efficiency. Ensure all tools have been inspected
and are in perfect condition.
For more information,
contact our New York City workers compensation attorney to discuss if you’re
covered and your options.