Workers’ Risk of Fatal Injuries Varies By Profession [infographic]

5 Feb, 2016
By: Donald W Fohrman
Where a person works, and what job they perform can have a significant impact on an individual's risk of injury. Some professions carry inherent dangers that can be mitigated, but not entirely avoided. In 2014, the Bureau of Labor Statistics records show that 4,679 workers lost their lives while performing their jobs. Nearly half, or 1,891, were because of transportation-related accidents. 
Fohrman Workers Risk of Fatal Injuries Varies By Profession

(Article continues below Infographic)

Workers compensation

Construction The Most Dangerous Career

In 2014, 874 construction workers were killed on work sites. Within this statistic, specialty contractors were the most at risk. That year, 545 individuals specialty contractors died on the job.

  • 180 died while laying foundations or setting concrete
  • 83 roofing professionals died from falls or other injuries
  • 81 electrical contractors were electrocuted while working on construction sites

Transportation Workers At Considerable Risk

735 workers involved in moving freight or people died in 2014. Of these;

  • 477 were truck drivers
  • 79 were involved in maintenance of vehicles or trains
  • 53 were taxi drivers

The leading causes of fatalities within this sector includes vehicular accidents, being crushed beneath vehicles, or being caught up in operating engines.

Manufacturing Jobs Are A Risky Occupation  

Manufacturing was the next most deadly profession according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 341 individuals lost their lives while manufacturing everything from food to textiles.

  • 37 fatalities were recorded by American slaughterhouses
  • 30 individuals died while producing cement
  • 28 died while processing raw steel, iron, and aluminum

Safe Professions Aren’t Entirely Safe

The risk of suffering a work related fatality wasn’t just limited to “dangerous” professions. 267 retail workers also lost their lives while performing their jobs. 51 retail and office workers in grocery stores, and a further 29 worked in convenience stores. Of these fatalities, falls and workplace violence, including robberies, were the leading causes of death.

Furthermore, Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys know that even seemingly innocuous professions have notable fatality rates, including:

  • 32 individuals died in the publishing/information sector
  • 29 individuals died in the finance and insurance sector
  • 78 professionals working in law, accounting, engineering, and management sectors
  • 30 architects
  • 56 real estate agents

Within each of these sectors, transportation accidents and violence were the leading causes of death. These fatality rates show that while the risk is lower in these professions, the risk is not non-existent. Thus, workers, management, and business owners should proactively take steps to protect themselves, their businesses, and their employees from the potential for harm.

About The Author

Photo of Donald W Fohrman
After completing law school Donald became an assistant Attorney General for 7 years and was assigned to the Industrial Commission Division. During that time he spent evenings establishing his own firm. Donald became a founding partner of a large workers’ compensation/personal injury firm but decided to leave the firm in 1990 to start a smaller “boutique” firm with the belief that bigger isn’t always better!
Request a
Free Consultation