What does a bad day at work look like for you? Maybe your first thought was clocking in late or even being scolded by your boss. The reality of working certain jobs is much more dire. While anyone can suffer work injuries, you are more likely to get hurt if you work in specific industries.
You probably already know that construction workers face a higher-than-average rate of workplace injuries. However, on the list of top 10 most dangerous industries in America, construction workers only come in at number nine. Other dangerous industries are often overlooked, perhaps in part due to the fact that some tend to have fewer workers.
Steel, structural iron and construction workers
There were 598,210 construction workers in 2019, compared with only 98,600 steel and structural iron workers. Despite the difference in total workers, the steel and iron work industry is the eighth most dangerous. These men and women tend to work at significant heights, making slips, trips and fall accidents their biggest risks. After adjusting the total work force, fatal injuries came out to 23.6 deaths for every 100,000 workers.
Of course, construction workers often work at great heights and are not immune to fall accidents, either. However, they are more likely to get hurt in transportation accidents. Heavy equipment also poses a serious threat to construction workers.
Transportation, refuse and recyclable workers
Transportation comes in at the sixth most dangerous industry. This industry is largely driven by truck drivers, who suffered the largest number of fatal injuries in 2019, or 26 deaths for every 100,000 full-time employees. Truck drivers and other transportation workers are often expected to spend long hours on the road, so it makes sense that they face a higher risk of transportation injuries.
While refuse and recyclable workers are not necessarily always behind the wheel of a vehicle, they still face a higher-than-average risk of transportation accidents and injuries. These men and women work year-round, often regardless of dangerous weather conditions. In 2019, there were 44.3 deaths for every 100,000 full time employees.
Despite having only 53,600 workers in 2019, there were 97.6 deaths for every 100,000 adjusted workers. Fatal accidents occur 28 times more often than in the average worker population. Falling objects and trees are the two biggest threats to logging worker safety. Other industries that have high rates of fatalities include:
While work injuries can happen to anyone at any time, you are more likely to suffer a serious or even fatal injury working in only a handful of industries. The period of time following a work accident can be confusing too, and victims and their families are often unsure of where to turn. The good news is that North Carolina’s workers’ compensation system provides benefits to injury victims, as well as temporary death benefits to family members who have lost loved ones.