Logging workers had highest rate of fatal work injuries in 2015

January 11, 2017

A total of 4,836 fatal work injuries were recorded in the United States in 2015, for an all-work fatal injury rate of 3.4 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers. Transportation and material moving occupations recorded fewer fatal injuries in 2015 than in 2014, but still accounted for over one-fourth of all fatal work injuries in 2015. Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers incurred 745 fatal work injuries in 2015, the most of any occupation. Logging workers had the highest fatal injury rate of rates calculated (132.7 fatal work injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers).

Fatal injuries among aircraft pilots and flight engineers were down 30 percent in 2015 to a series low of 57 fatalities, although they did have a high fatal injury rate compared to all workers. Aircraft incidents in 2015 were at their highest level since 2011 even with this decrease for aircraft pilots and flight engineers.

Civilian occupations with high fatal work injury rates, 2015
Occupation Rate (per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers) Fatal work injuries

Logging workers

132.7 67

Fishers and related fishing workers

54.8 23

Aircraft pilots and flight engineers

40.4 57

Roofers

39.7 75

Refuse and recyclable material collectors

38.8 33

Structural iron and steel workers

29.8 17

Driver/sales workers and truck drivers

24.3 885

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers

22.0 252

Electrical power-line installers and repairers

20.5 26

First-line supervisors of landscaping, lawn service, and groundskeeping workers

18.1 38

Fatal injuries in the private construction industry rose 4 percent in 2015 to 937 from 899 in 2014. The 2015 total for construction was the highest since 2008 and was primarily led by an increase in fatal injuries among specialty trade contractors, though the rate for construction remained statistically unchanged. The largest increase among specialty trade contractors involved foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors whose fatal injury total rose 27 percent to 231 fatal injuries in 2015 from 182 in 2014.

The private mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction industry recorded fewer fatal injuries in 2015, declining 34 percent to 120 fatal injuries from 183 in 2014. Fatal work injuries in the combined oil and gas extraction industries were 38 percent lower. The 2015 combined total for oil and gas extraction industries was the lowest since 2009.

Rate and number of fatal work injuries by industry sector, 2015
Industry Rate (per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers) Fatal work injuries

Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting

22.8 570

Transportation and warehousing

13.8 765

Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction

11.4 120

Construction

10.1 937

Wholesale trade

4.7 175

Professional and business services

3.0 477

Other services (exc. public admin.)

3.0 202

Manufacturing

2.3 353

Utilities

2.2 22

Leisure and hospitality

2.0 225

Government

1.9 457

Retail trade

1.8 269

Information

1.5 42

Financial activities

0.9 83

Educational and health services

0.7 139

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 "National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2015" (HTML) (PDF).

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Logging workers had highest rate of fatal work injuries in 2015 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2017/logging-workers-had-highest-rate-of-fatal-work-injuries-in-2015.htm (visited December 12, 2018).

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