Fatal workplace injuries in the U.S. fell to 4,340 in 2009, down from 5,214 in 2008. While these numbers are still alarmingly high, the rate of fatal occupational injuries last year was actually the lowest it has been in ten years.
The present state of the economy appears to be a significant factor in the decline of work-related deaths, especially as high-risk occupations like construction are experiencing a historic downturn and employing fewer people.
Here in Washington State, 57 workplace injuries resulted in death, the lowest number since 2000. Of these fatalities 9 were construction-related, less than half the number of construction-accident deaths in 2008.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics published the following data on Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2009:
- 2009 saw an overall 17% decrease in fatal work injuries, although workplace homicides dropped by only 1%.
- Workplace fatalities among salaried and wage-workers declined by 20%, while accidental deaths among self-employed workers dropped only 3%.
- Fatalities in private construction declined by 16%.
- Building cleaning and grounds maintenance occupations were the only sectors that experienced an increase of fatalities.
See the full report published by the United States Department of Labor.
This information is provided by the Emery Reddy Worker’s Compensation and L&I blog. If you have been injured at work, or if someone close to you has been killed in a a workplace accident, please contact our firm today for a free and confidential consultation with one of our Worker’s Compensation attorneys.