January 04, 2012
Nearly two-thirds of all homicides in the retail trade sector during the 2003–2008 period occurred in two types of retail establishments: food and beverage stores (41.4 percent) and gasoline stations (22.0 percent). The other third were distributed among 10 other types of retailers, including motor vehicle and parts dealers (8.4 percent), clothing and clothing accessories stores (6.8 percent), and general merchandise stores (4.9 percent).
Grocery stores, which are part of the food and beverage stores subsector, accounted for 34.1 percent of all homicides in retail trade over the 2003–2008 period. In addition, 22.5 percent of all homicides occurred in convenience stores, and 94 percent of convenience store employees who were killed on the job died as a result of homicide. Homicides accounted for more than four-fifths of fatal occupational injuries in beer, wine and liquor stores, and three-fourths of all cases that occurred at gasoline stations.
Workers in retail trade face several risk factors associated with their jobs, including contact with the public, the exchange of money, delivery of goods and services, working alone or in small numbers, and working late at night or during the early morning hours. Most retail salespersons and cashiers work at cash registers and take payments from customers.
These data are from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, which is part of the BLS Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities program. To learn more, see "Assaults and Violent Acts in the Private Retail Trade Sector, 2003–2008" in the December issue of Compensation and Working Conditions Online.