The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has released the census of fatal occupational injuries in 2019. A major increase in work-related deaths has been reported over the prior year. The changing workplace and a major increase in deliveries were reflected in the report in that nearly one out of every five fatally injured workers was employed as a driver/sales worker or truck driver.
There were 5,333 fatal work injuries recorded in the United States in 2019, a 2 percent increase from the 5,250 in 2018, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The fatal work injury rate was 3.5 fatalities per 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers, which was the rate reported in 2018. (These data are from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI).
Key findings from the 2019 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries
- The 5,333 fatal occupational injuries in 2019 represents the largest annual number since 2007.
- A worker died every 99 minutes from a work-related injury in 2019.
- Fatalities among workers age 55 and over increased 8 percent from 1,863 in 2018 to 2,005 in 2019, which is the largest number ever recorded for this age group.
- Hispanic or Latino worker fatalities were up 13 percent to 1,088 in 2019–a series high since 1992.
- Workplace deaths due to suicides (307) and unintentional overdoses (313) increased slightly in 2019.
- Fatalities in the private construction industry increased 5 percent to 1,061–the largest total since 2007.
- Driver/sales workers and truck drivers incurred 1,005 fatal occupational injuries, the highest since this series began in 2003.
Jon L. Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author of NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thomson-Reuters) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thomson-Reuters). For over 4 decades the Law Offices of Jon L Gelman 1.973.696.7900 firstname.lastname@example.org has been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.
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