Most of us know someone who has a dangerous occupation. Whether it is a construction worker at a crowded jobsite or a police officer making a traffic stop, it is impossible to predict when an accident may occur.
Workers who end up with an injury may rely on workers’ compensation to help make ends meet, but this does not address the issue of what caused these accidents. When on-the-job deaths or injuries happen, officials often perform extensive investigations to ensure that proper safety precautions are put in place.
Each year, the AFL-CIO compiles a report that examines death, injuries and illnesses that occur throughout the United States. The organization recently released the 2012 compilation, which performs an in-depth analysis across various industries using 2010 numbers provided by the Department of Labor.
Overall, workplace fatalities increased – from 4,551 in 2009 to 4,690 in 2010. The report also estimates that 3.8 million workers experienced some type of workplace injury during this same period. In Pennsylvania, there were 3.8 workplace fatalities per 100,000 workers in 2010, which is an increase from the 3.1 per 100,000 that was reported in 2009.
The AFL-CIO believes that these numbers may actually be underreporting the seriousness of the issue. They feel that the rate of injuries and illness may be three times higher than the number that is actually reported because of the different reporting requirements from state to state.
Workers injured on the job must report these injuries as soon as they occur. Waiting too long to notify your employer may result in certain benefits being unavailable. Specific requirements must be followed when filing for workers’ comp, and failing to follow these instructions could have harsh consequences.
Source: EHS Today “Death on the Job: 13 Occupational Fatalities Occurred Daily in 2010” Laura Walter, May 2, 2012.