When you think of the most dangerous occupations, what comes to mind? If you’re like most people, you probably envision a job with explosions, heavy machinery, or extreme heights. After reading the latest statistics from OSHA, however, you may look at things a little differently.
Before you read the list of most dangerous jobs, let’s do a quick check to see if you can guess any of the top 10 most dangerous occupations…
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, these were the most dangerous occupations in 2016 (the most up-to-date collection of statistics available). The jobs are ranked by highest fatality rate per 100,000 employees. Total number of deaths and injuries are also shown for reference.
|Rank||Occupation||Fatality Rate||Total Deaths||Total Injuries|
|3||Pilots & Flight Engineers||56||75||470|
|5||Garbage & Recycling Collectors*||34||31||6,170|
|6||Iron & Steel Workers||25||16||1,440|
|7||Sales & Truck Drivers||25||918||80,180|
|8||Farming Managers *||23||260||n/a|
|9||Construction Supervisors *||18||134||6,090|
|11||Grounds Maintenance Workers||17||217||20,100|
|12||Mechanic & Repair Supervisors||16||44||4,140|
|17||Taxi Drivers *||13||60||2,730|
|19||Telecom Line Installers *||12||21||2,480|
|21||Constructions Equipment Operators||11||39||4,750|
|23||Industrial Machinery Workers||9||45||4,490|
*These jobs involve a significant amount of driving and interaction with public roadways, and a significant portion of the fatalities are related to vehicular accidents.
The leading causes of deaths in the construction industry (which includes a number of the jobs above) were falls, being struck by object, electrocution, and “caught-in-between.” These 4 causes are referred to as the “Fatal Four” and accounted for over 63.7% of the total deaths in the construction industry. Highway collisions, however, overshadow all the other causes of workplace fatalities and span across many of the industries and occupations.
NOTE: This does not include simply “driving to work” which is not considered “on the job” by OSHA standards.
So, the most dangerous job of the modern world involves chainsaws and downing trees – that seems pretty understandable. What surprised us, and many who have responded to the survey, is that salespeople and truck drivers are MORE at risk than policemen, power line workers, electricians, and construction workers! The lack of perception to danger is one factor that makes it so dangerous in the first place.
Whether your occupation is listed in the top 10 most dangerous occupations or not, safety in the workplace and behind the wheel, is a topic worth discussing with your coworkers, employees, and/or employers.
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