Jobs With the Highest Rates of Fatalities
Every job, regardless of industry or environment, comes with its own sets of occupational hazards. Even a seemingly mundane office setting can be full of hazards ranging from heavy boxes to carpal tunnel syndrome. However, some jobs are inherently riskier than others, even when proper steps are taken to keep workers safe. Not only do the people who do these jobs face an increased risk of being injured on the job, they’re also at a higher risk of dying on the job.
In 2014, over 4,600 American workers died on the job, which was 2% higher than the previous year. Out of all these workplace deaths, many of these fatalities happened in certain industries. So, what are some of the most dangerous jobs?
Many jobs with the highest rates of fatalities are jobs that involve working outdoors, at higher elevations, or heavy equipment and machinery. Logging workers had the highest worker fatality rate in 2014 with 109.5 per 100,000 workers. While fishing can be a relaxing way to spend a weekend, it’s anything but peaceful for professional fishers. Fishing workers have the second highest rate of worker fatalities with 80.8 per 100,000 workers due to the treacherous conditions that come along with having to spend time on the water. Working at a higher elevation means that workers have to face the risk of dealing with falling accidents. Roofers have the highest rate of fall, trip, and slip accidents.
Garbage collectors also face a very high rate of workplace fatalities. Between the equipment they have to work with and the risk for transportation accidents, garbage collectors have a workplace fatality rate of 35.8 per 100,000 workers. Remarkably, garbage collectors are killed on the job four times more frequently than firefighters and security guards.
Out of all transportation-related occupations, pilots have the highest rate of workplace fatalities. There’s simply nothing to that can be done to change the fact that if something goes wrong after take-off, it’s a long way down. However, unlike many other dangerous occupations, pilots are at least paid well for the level of risk they take every day. Many other workers in highly dangerous fields typically receive very low pay. In 2014, agricultural workers and loggers both had very high rates of workplace fatalities, but received very low pay.
Certain occupations face a higher risk of being killed on the job due to violent crime. Cashiers, managers of retail stores and restaurants, security guards, property managers, police officers, retail sales associates, security guards, and taxi drivers/chauffeurs all have a higher rate of being killed on the job due to violence or homicide. Taxi drivers are actually statistically more likely to die as the result of a violent crime than they are in a car accident.
Remember, even if you do work in one of these often dangerous industries, that doesn’t mean excessively unsafe workplaces are acceptable. Even in the most hazardous jobs out there, there are steps that can be taken to help keep workers as safe as possible.