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Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities

OSH Frequently Asked Questions


General


  1. What types of data are available from the IIF program?
    • The IIF program produces a wide range of statistics on workplace fatal and nonfatal injuries and illnesses by industry and worker characteristics. More information about our program and the statistics we produce can be found here.

  2. What is the scope of BLS workplace safety data?
    • The Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) reports estimates of nonfatal injuries and illnesses for private industry, state and local governments. Current exceptions include workers on farms with 10 or fewer employees, private household workers, volunteers, and federal government workers. For more information, see our Handbook of Methods.

      The Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) is a comprehensive national measure of all fatal workplace injuries. For more information, see our Handbook of Methods.

  3. Where can I find the most recent injury rates for my industry?
    • The most recently published nonfatal incidence rates by industry can be found here.

  4. Where can I find information on occupations with the highest injury and illness rates?
    • Nonfatal

      The latest numbers and rates of nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses by occupation can be found in these tables.

    • Fatal

      The latest numbers and rates of fatal workplace injuries by occupation can be found in these tables and charts.

  5. Does BLS calculate employer costs?
    • No. BLS does not provide estimates for costs associated with workplace injuries.

  6. Is the BLS count of workplace injuries and illnesses complete?
    • BLS has funded multiple research projects that examined the completeness and quality of the occupational injury and illness data collected by the SOII. These studies found that the SOII did not capture some cases that appeared to be within its scope; however, the estimated magnitude of the undercount varied depending on the methodology employed by the researchers.

      For additional background information on the completeness of the SOII injury and illness counts and an update on current research see the SOII data quality research page.

  7. I tested the statistical significance of a statement of comparison between two estimates. Why did I get a different result than what BLS published?
    • The variation in estimates is measured by the percent relative standard error (RSE), which is used to calculate confidence intervals around sample estimates and test comparative statements. The IIF program publishes RSEs on its website to one decimal place for ease of display but may calculate confidence intervals and conduct significance tests using RSEs at higher levels of precision. As a result, public users who conduct their own significance tests from published RSEs may, from time to time, get slightly different results than BLS. Additional information on the reliability of IIF estimates and the calculation of confidence intervals can be found at https://www.bls.gov/iif/additional-resources/reliability-of-estimates.htm.

  8. Why do published estimates for the rail transportation industry differ from published data on the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) website?
    • Differences between BLS published estimates for the rail transportation industry and data published by the FRA are mainly due to differences in the scope of the published data. To best align with scope of SOII collection, BLS includes injuries and illnesses that are excluded from published FRA data. Particularly, BLS may include injuries and illnesses to employees not on duty, contractors, volunteers, and workers injured off railroad property. FRA-published data include only injury or illness cases for on-duty railroad employees. In addition to differences in scope, SOII estimation methodologies may also introduce some small differences between results published by both agencies. BLS will implement changes that will mitigate these small methodological differences; however, differences in scops will remain.


For employers


  1. How can I assess my establishment's safety record?
    • You can assess your establishment's safety record by comparing your incidence rate relative to the national rates for similar establishments.

      Industry (nonfatal) injury and illness rates from the most recent published data can be found here.

      Information on calculating your firm's incidence rate can be found here.

  2. How do I complete the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses?
  3. Where can I find another company's injury rates?
    • Data provided to the Bureau of Labor Statistics by respondents is strictly confidential. BLS does not share this information.

      For more information, see the Data Integrity Guidelines and Confidentiality Pledge and Laws. For information on establishments that may have been cited for workplace violations or for other regulatory guidelines, contact the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).


Accessing BLS IIF data


  1. How can I access IIF data?
    • There are multiple ways to access IIF data.

      Often, depending on the level of information sought, the information may be found in our resource tables.

      Nonfatal data — Injury and illness data by industry. These data are released annually.

    • Nonfatal data (case circumstances and worker demographics) — Details on the injured or ill worker and case circumstances including the event, source, nature, and part of body involved in the injury or illness are available for cases involving days away from work, job transfer, or restriction. These data are released every other year (biennially).

      Fatal data — Total counts of fatal workplace injuries, including details on the injured worker, event leading to injury, and source of injury.

      For a more customized browsing experience, we recommend using the Data Profiles tool.

  2. Is there an easy way to retrieve an overview of injuries for a particular occupation in a particular industry and/or event?
    • Yes. Use the online data profiles tool which allows you to choose a topic of interest (such as a detailed industry or occupation) to generate and view crosstabs. Below is an example of an industry data profile that can be created:
      1. Go to our Online Profiles tool: https://data.bls.gov/gqt/InitialPage.
      2. Select “Fatal Injury Numbers” for fatal data
      3. Select most recent year of data you are interested in.
      4. Select "All U.S." or the state you want. Select Single year or a range of years.
      5. Select characteristic type and order.
      6. Select the subcharacteristic and ownership type.
      7. Select your output type. The first will create an Excel file based on your criteria. The second will generate the data inside the browser for you to review.
  3. Does BLS provide access to restricted or confidential data?
    • Yes. BLS allows eligible researchers the opportunity to gain access to restricted data files for select statistical research projects. Access to microdata for the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) and Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) programs are available in one of our Federal Statistical Research Data Centers (FSRDCs) throughout the country and onsite at BLS in Washington, D.C. More information can be found here. Access to a research file requires a well-defined research question that must go through an approval process that takes approximately 6 months.

      The CFOI micro fatality research file is also available to access through the BLS Virtual Data Enclave (VDE). Access to the CFOI research file through the VDE requires the same application and approval process as onsite access.

      For more information, the IIF program can be reached at (202) 691-6170 or by e-mailing IIF Staff.

  4. Does the IIF program provide flat files for published data?
    • The IIF program has flat files for the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) and Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) that contain a large amount of fatal and nonfatal data. Each set of files corresponds with certain years of data. Below are the available data series since 2003:
      • CFOI
        • Series FI for 2003-2010 https://download.bls.gov/pub/time.series/fi/
        • Series FW for 2011-forward https://download.bls.gov/pub/time.series/fw/
      • SOII Industry-level
        • Series II for 2003-2013 https://download.bls.gov/pub/time.series/ii/
        • Series IS for 2014-forward https://download.bls.gov/pub/time.series/is/
      • SOII Case and Demographics involving days away from work (2020 and prior)
      • SOII Biennial Case and Demographics data for cases involving days away from work, job transfer, or restriction (Biennial 2021-2022 and forward)

      The ".txt" files in each section explains the data available for that series. You can use the ".txt" file to extract data from the other files in the directory.

      Note that our coding systems that are the foundation of the data have changed over the years so use caution when comparing data across series breaks.

      Each flat file has a data point associated with a unique Series ID. More information on Series ID formats and downloading  data prior to 2003 is here.

  5. Can BLS provide data that isn't currently online?
    • BLS can provide data in addition to what is available online. If you have a specific data request, contact us to see if this is something we can provide.

      If there is specific information that you would like to request, the IIF program can be reached at (202) 691-6170 or by submitting a data request online.

  6. Why are there noticeably fewer counts in CFOI data since reference year 2019?
    • Starting with the reference year 2019, CFOI modernized its disclosure methodology further strengthening its protection of confidential data. As a result of these necessary protections there are fewer publishable counts in CFOI. Disclosure protection is always an ongoing balance between protecting confidential data from disclosure and providing useful data to users.

      Individually identifiable data collected by the CFOI are used exclusively for statistical purposes and are protected under the Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act of 2002 (CIPSEA). These data are collected under a pledge of confidentiality and therefore require BLS to prevent disclosure of identifying information of decedents.

  7. If CFOI data for the industry that I am interested in are not available since reference year 2019, do I have other options?
    • If fatal injury counts at an individual ownership level (i.e., private, federal, state, local) are not available, you may find more data at the “All ownership” level. You can get these data by running an Industry Profile for “All ownerships” in the Profiles Tool. In the Profiles Tool, select “Fatal Injuries Numbers,” then follow these steps:

      1. Select a year.
      2. Select a geographic area. Choose a beginning year.
      3. For Characteristic Type select "Industry." Choose between "Name or description" or "Numeric."
      4. Under Subcharacteristic, choose the industry you desire. For Ownership, choose "All ownership."

      This will generate either an Excel or HTML table.

  8. How is COVID-19 reflected in SOII data?
    • Occupational injuries and illnesses collected in the 2020 and 2021 SOII include cases of COVID-19 when a worker was infected as a result of performing their work-related duties and met other recordkeeping criteria. COVID-19 is considered a respiratory illness under criteria established by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The SOII collects detailed case information, including nature, for incidences requiring at least one day away from work and codes these cases using the Occupational Injury and Illness Classification System (OIICS). While OIICS does not include a code specifically for COVID-19, applicable days away from work cases were included in the Nature code 3299 – “Other diseases due to viruses, not elsewhere classified.” Additionally, these cases were coded under the following categories based on the Occupational Injuries and Illnesses Classification System, version 2.01:

      • Part code 6: - Body systems
      • Event code 550: - Exposure to other harmful substance, unspecified
      • Source code 533: – Viruses

      For more information on the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on SOII and CFOI, see: https://www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-on-workplace-injuries-and-illnesses-compensation-and-occupational-requirements.htm.

      Selected data for Nature code 3299 and additional discussion of how COVID-19 is reflected in the SOII can be found at https://www.bls.gov/iif/factsheets/how-covid-19-is-reflected-in-the-soii-data.htm.

  9. Why are my bookmarked links not taking me to the right page?
    • BLS recently redesigned the IIF website to improve navigation and include more dynamic pages. As part of the redesign, webpage addresses and data tables were renamed. A crosswalk (XLSX) of the old filenames to the new filenames is available.

  10. Where are the data tables prior to 2011?
    • BLS recently redesigned the IIF website to improve navigation and include more dynamic pages. As part of the redesign, many of the historical data tables were removed from the website but are available upon request. These data also remain available through our databases and through the Profiles Tool.


OSHA/BLS reporting


  1. Is OSHA electronic reporting the same as the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses?
    • No. OSHA's Injury Tracking Application (ITA)is an electronic reporting requirement for establishments developed and maintained by OSHA. The SOII is a survey of establishments administered by BLS for statistical purposes. Some employers may be required to report to OSHA and may also be sampled for participation in the SOII.

      More information on OSHA electronic reporting requirements can be found here.

  2. Does BLS use information collected by OSHA?
    • In some instances, yes. Some respondents will be able to provide their OSHA identification number (OSHA ID) to import to BLS the data that they have submitted to the OSHA ITA in that same year. If BLS can successfully match establishment information with information reported to OSHA, data that have been reported to the OSHA ITA will be automatically imported into the SOII Internet Data Collection Facility (IDCF). Imported data are taken from the OSHA 300A form, “Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses.” Additional information may need to be entered manually to complete the SOII.

  3. I tried to enter my OSHA Identification Number (OSHA ID) when entering data for BLS and it did not work. Why?
    • BLS has implemented several matching criteria in addition to the OSHA ID to ensure the confidentiality and security of SOII respondents, and to ensure that the establishment matches the location(s) sampled by the SOII.

  4. Where can I find my OSHA ID number?
    • The OSHA ID number is sent to a respondent by OSHA once they enter their information into the OSHA ITA system. The OSHA ID would appear in a confirmation email sent by OSHA from DoNotReply@osha.gov with the subject “OSHA Injury and Illness Report: Successful Submission(s).”



      OSHA ID email
  5. Can we submit data to only BLS or OSHA?
    • No. If you receive a mandatory survey from BLS and are required also to provide information to OSHA, you must submit it to both agencies.

  6. Where can I find additional information regarding OSHA's recordkeeping rule requiring employers to electronically submit injury and illness data?
    • Visit OSHA's website for additional information on their recordkeeping rule requiring employers to electronically submit injury and illness data to OSHA. Additional questions should be directed to OSHA.


DJTR collection


  1. Will case and demographic estimates for DAFW and DJTR cases be a regularly produced data product?
    • Yes. Case and demographic estimates for Days Away from Work (DAFW) and for Days of Job Transfer or Restriction (DJTR) cases are produced biennially (every 2 years), starting with combined data from reference years 2021 and 2022 that were published in November 2023. The final single year DAFW estimates were for reference year 2020 that was published in November 2021.

  2. Why is BLS making this change?
  3. Will DJTR data be aggregated for detailed categories such as occupation or nature of injury?
    • Yes. The biennial publication of estimates for case circumstances and worker demographics beginning with reference years 2021-2022 is intended to provide the same level of detail among DJTR and DAFW cases as was previously available only for DAFW cases.

  4. Why is BLS changing case and demographic estimates to a biennial publication?
    • BLS changed the case and demographic estimates to a biennial publication cycle to be able to collect nationwide all-industry case details for DJTR cases without additional agency resources or respondent burden. After the BLS DJTR pilot concluded, it was determined that a biennial publication would support the dissemination of these new important estimates which would otherwise not be available.


 

Last Modified Date: April 10, 2024