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News Release Information

21-563-PHI
Tuesday, March 23, 2021

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Fatal Work Injuries in Pennsylvania — 2019

Fatal work injuries totaled 154 in 2019 for Pennsylvania, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Acting Regional Commissioner Frank Waligorski noted that the number of work-related fatalities in Pennsylvania was down from the previous year. Fatal occupational injuries in the state have ranged from a high of 354 in 1994 to a low of 154 in 2019. (See chart 1.)

Nationwide, a total of 5,333 fatal work injuries were recorded in 2019, a 2-percent increase from the 5,250 in 2018, according to the results from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) program. The 5,333 fatal occupational injuries in 2019 represents the largest annual number since 2007.   

Fatal event or exposure

In Pennsylvania, transportation incidents resulted in 62 fatal work injuries and contact with objects and equipment accounted for 32 fatalities. These two major categories accounted for 61 percent of all workplace fatalities in the state. (See table 1.) Worker deaths from transportation incidents were up from 53 over the year and worker fatalities due to contact with objects and equipment were down from 41.

Exposure to harmful substances or environments was the third-most frequent fatal work event with 22 fatalities, down from 28 in the prior year. Violence and other injuries by persons or animals resulted in 21 work-related deaths, the same as in 2018.

Nationally, transportation incidents were the most frequent fatal workplace event in 2019, accounting for 40 percent of fatal work injuries. (See chart 2.) Falls, slips, and trips was the second-most common fatal event (17 percent), followed by violence and other injuries by persons or animals (16 percent).

Industry

The private construction industry and private transportation and warehousing industry had the highest number of fatalities in Pennsylvania with 26 each. (See table 2.) Exposure to harmful substances or environments accounted for 7 of the 26 fatalities in the construction industry while transportation incidents resulted in 18 of the 26 fatalities in the transportation and warehousing industry.

The private administrative and support and waste management and remediation services industry had 20 workplace fatalities, 10 of them due to transportation incidents.

Occupation

The transportation and material moving occupational group had the highest number of workplace fatalities with 53. (See table 3.) Motor vehicle operators accounted for 35 of the 53 fatalities among transportation and material moving workers. The construction and extraction occupational group had the second highest number of workplace fatalities with 32. Construction trades workers suffered 21 of the work-related deaths within the construction and extraction group. Installation, maintenance, and repair occupations had 11 workplace fatalities. Vehicle and mobile equipment mechanics, installers, and repairers accounted for 8 of the 11 fatalities among installation, maintenance, and repair workers.

Additional highlights:

  • Men accounted for 91 percent of the work-related fatalities in Pennsylvania, similar to the national share. (See table 4.) Transportation incidents made up 41 percent of the fatalities for men in Pennsylvania.
  • White non-Hispanics accounted for 79 percent of those who died from a workplace injury. Nationwide, this group accounted for 62 percent of work-related deaths.
  • Workers 55 years old and over accounted for 42 percent of the state’s work-related fatalities in 2019, compared to 38 percent of on-the-job fatalities nationally.
  • Of the 154 fatal work injuries in Pennsylvania, 83 percent worked for wages and salaries; the remainder were self-employed. The most frequent fatal event for both groups of workers was transportation incidents.

Changes in Industry and Occupation Classification Structure

Information in this release incorporates revisions to both the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) and the Standard Occupational Classification codes (SOC). Comparison of data for 2019 to prior years should be done with caution due to these changes, and thus analysis in this release is limited to 2019 for industries and occupations. More information on NAICS can be found at www.bls.gov/bls/naics.htm. More information on SOC can be found at www.bls.gov/soc/2018/home.htm.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries

Data in this news release are for reference year 2019. No changes in collection procedures or outputs were necessary due to COVID-19. Additional information is available at www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-on-workplace-injuries-and-illnesses-compensation-and-occupational-requirements.htm.


Technical Note

Background of the program. The Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI), part of the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Safety and Health Statistics (OSHS) program, is a count of all fatal work injuries occurring in the U.S. during the calendar year. The CFOI uses a variety of state, federal, and independent data sources to identify, verify, and describe fatal work injuries. This ensures counts are as complete and accurate as possible. For the 2019 national data, over 25,100 unique source documents were reviewed as part of the data collection process. For technical information and definitions for the CFOI, see the BLS Handbook of Methods on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/cfoi/home.htm and the CFOI definitions at www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm.

Federal/State agency coverage. The CFOI includes data for all fatal work injuries, some of which may be outside the scope of other agencies or regulatory coverage. Comparisons between CFOI counts and those released by other agencies should account for the different coverage requirements and definitions used by each agency. For more information on the scope of CFOI, see www.bls.gov/iif/cfoiscope.htm and www.bls.gov/opub/hom/cfoi/concepts.htm.

Acknowledgments. BLS thanks the Pennsylvania Department of Health for their efforts in collecting accurate, comprehensive, and useful data on fatal work injuries. BLS also appreciates the efforts of all federal, state, local, and private sector entities that provided source documents used to identify fatal work injuries. Among these agencies are the Occupational Safety and Health Administration; the National Transportation Safety Board; the U.S. Coast Guard; the Mine Safety and Health Administration; the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (Federal Employees' Compensation and Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation divisions); the Federal Railroad Administration; the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; state vital statistics registrars, coroners, and medical examiners; state departments of health, labor, and industrial relations and workers' compensation agencies; state and local police departments; and state farm bureaus.

Information in this release will be made available to individuals with sensory impairments upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Fatal occupational injuries by event or exposure, Pennsylvania, 2018–19
Event or exposure (1)20182019
NumberNumberPercent

Total

177154100

Violence and other injuries by persons or animals

212114

Intentional injury by person

181912

Intentional injury by other person

1075

Shooting by other person--intentional

664

Stabbing, cutting, slashing, piercing

111

Self-inflicted injury--intentional

8128

Shooting--intentional self-harm

343

Hanging, strangulation, asphyxiation--intentional self-harm

364

Injury by person--unintentional or intent unknown

111

Injury by other person--unintentional or intent unknown

111

Shooting by other person--unintentional

111

Animal and insect related incidents

--11

Struck by animal

--11

Trampled by or stepped on by animal

--11

Transportation incidents

536240

Aircraft incidents

311

Other in-flight crash

--11

Other in-flight crash into structure, object, or ground

--11

Rail vehicle incidents

--11

Pedestrian struck by rail vehicle--transportation incident

--11

Animal and other non-motorized vehicle transportation incidents

411

Animal transportation incident

311

Pedestrian vehicular incident

141510

Pedestrian struck by vehicle in work zone

--21

Pedestrian struck by vehicle backing up in work zone

--21

Pedestrian struck by vehicle in roadway

243

Pedestrian struck by vehicle on side of road

311

Pedestrian struck by forward-moving vehicle on side of road

311

Pedestrian struck by vehicle in nonroadway area

675

Pedestrian struck by vehicle propelled by another vehicle in nonroadway area

--11

Pedestrian struck by vehicle backing up in nonroadway area

--32

Roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicle

283422

Roadway collision with other vehicle

13138

Roadway collision--moving in same direction

--43

Roadway collision--moving in opposite directions, oncoming

853

Roadway collision with object other than vehicle

14138

Vehicle struck object or animal on side of roadway

13138

Roadway noncollision incident

185

Jack-knifed or overturned, roadway

--75

Fall or jump from vehicle in normal operation, roadway

--11

Nonroadway incident involving motorized land vehicles

496

Nonroadway noncollision incident

364

Jack-knifed or overturned, nonroadway

--43

Falls, slips, trips

241610

Falls to lower level

21138

Fall through surface or existing opening

153

Fall through surface or existing opening more than 30 feet

--11

Other fall to lower level

1885

Exposure to harmful substances or environments

282214

Exposure to electricity

732

Direct exposure to electricity

311

Direct exposure to electricity, greater than 220 volts

--11

Exposure to other harmful substances

17149

Nonmedical use of drugs or alcohol--unintentional overdose

16128

Exposure to oxygen deficiency, n.e.c.

--43

Contact with objects and equipment

413221

Struck by object or equipment

302214

Struck by powered vehicle--nontransport

1164

Struck or run over by rolling powered vehicle

232

Struck by other falling powered vehicle

411

Struck by rolling object or equipment--other than powered vehicle

--11

Struck by falling object or equipment--other than powered vehicle

15117

Struck by object falling from vehicle or machinery--other than vehicle part

511

Struck by discharged or flying object

211

Caught in or compressed by equipment or objects

675

Caught in running equipment or machinery

453

Caught in running equipment or machinery during regular operation

--32

Struck, caught, or crushed in collapsing structure, equipment, or material

532

Mine collapse or cave-in

--11

Struck, caught, or crushed in other collapsing structure or equipment

421

Footnotes:
(1) Based on the BLS Occupational Injury and Illness Classification System (OIICS) 2.01 implemented for 2011 data forward.

NOTE: Data for all years are final. Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. For complete information on how the data are coded and presented see our definitions page at https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatal injury counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.

Table 2. Fatal occupational injuries by industry, Pennsylvania, 2019
Industry (1)NumberPercent

Total

154100

Private industry (2)

14494

Goods producing

----

Natural resources and mining

1912

Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting

138

Animal production and aquaculture

75

Cattle ranching and farming

64

Dairy cattle and milk production

64

Sheep and goat farming

11

Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction (3)

64

Mining (except oil and gas)

32

Coal mining

32

Coal mining

32

Support activities for mining

32

Support activities for mining

32

Support activities for mining

32

Support activities for oil and gas operations

32

Construction

2617

Construction

2617

Heavy and civil engineering construction

43

Service providing (4)

----

Trade, transportation, and utilities

4026

Wholesale trade

106

Merchant wholesalers, durable goods

64

Merchant wholesalers, nondurable goods

43

Retail trade

43

Transportation and warehousing

2617

Truck transportation

1711

General freight trucking

117

General freight trucking, long-distance

117

General freight trucking, long-distance, truckload

75

Specialized freight trucking

64

Specialized freight (except used goods) trucking, local

32

Specialized freight (except used goods) trucking, long-distance

32

Transit and ground passenger transportation

11

Warehousing and storage

21

Warehousing and storage

21

General warehousing and storage

21

Professional and business services

2315

Professional, scientific, and technical services

32

Professional, scientific, and technical services

32

Advertising, public relations, and related services

11

Outdoor advertising

11

Administrative and support and waste management and remediation services

2013

Administrative and support services

138

Waste management and remediation services

75

Educational and health services

53

Educational services

11

Educational services

11

Health care and social assistance

43

Leisure and hospitality

96

Arts, entertainment, and recreation

43

Performing arts, spectator sports, and related industries

32

Promoters of performing arts, sports, and similar events

11

Promoters of performing arts, sports, and similar events with facilities

11

Amusement, gambling, and recreation industries

11

Other amusement and recreation industries

11

Golf courses and country clubs

11

Accommodation and food services

53

Other services, except public administration

64

Other services, except public administration

64

Government (5)

106

State government

21

Local government

85

Footnotes:
(1) CFOI has used several versions of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) since 2003 to define industry. For complete information on the version of NAICS used in this year, see our definitions page at https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm.
(2) Cases where ownership is unknown are included in private industry counts.
(3) Includes fatal injuries at all establishments categorized as Mining (Sector 21) in the North American Industry Classification System, including establishments not governed by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) rules and reporting, such as those in oil and gas extraction.
(4) Cases where industry is unknown are included in the service sector counts.
(5) Includes fatal injuries to workers employed by governmental organizations regardless of industry. Cases classified as foreign government and other government are included in all government counts, but not displayed separately.

NOTE: Data for all years are final. Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. For complete information on how the data are coded and presented see our definitions page at https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatal injury counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.

Table 3. Fatal occupational injuries by occupation, Pennsylvania, 2019
Occupation (1)NumberPercent

Total

154100

Management occupations

85

Other management occupations

64

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers

64

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers

64

Architecture and engineering occupations

11

Engineers

11

Civil engineers

11

Civil engineers

11

Community and social service occupations

11

Counselors, social workers, and other community and social service specialists

11

Counselors

11

Mental health counselors

11

Educational instruction and library occupations

11

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media occupations

43

Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations

11

Healthcare diagnosing or treating practitioners

11

Chiropractors

11

Chiropractors

11

Protective service occupations

43

Firefighting and prevention workers

21

Law enforcement workers

11

Police officers

11

Other protective service workers

11

Security guards and gambling surveillance officers

11

Security guards

11

Food preparation and serving related occupations

43

Supervisors of food preparation and serving workers

11

Supervisors of food preparation and serving workers

11

First-line supervisors of food preparation and serving workers

11

Other food preparation and serving related workers

11

Dining room and cafeteria attendants and bartender helpers

11

Dining room and cafeteria attendants and bartender helpers

11

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations

106

Supervisors of building and grounds cleaning and maintenance workers

43

First-line supervisors of building and grounds cleaning and maintenance workers

43

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

43

Grounds maintenance workers

64

Grounds maintenance workers

64

Landscaping and groundskeeping workers

32

Tree trimmers and pruners

32

Sales and related occupations

32

Supervisors of sales workers

32

First-line supervisors of sales workers

32

Office and administrative support occupations

32

Farming, fishing, and forestry occupations

75

Construction and extraction occupations

3221

Supervisors of construction and extraction workers

75

First-line supervisors of construction trades and extraction workers

75

First-line supervisors of construction trades and extraction workers

75

Construction trades workers

2114

Brickmasons, blockmasons, and stonemasons

11

Brickmasons and blockmasons

11

Construction laborers

117

Construction laborers

117

Construction equipment operators

43

Operating engineers and other construction equipment operators

43

Electricians

11

Electricians

11

Other construction and related workers

21

Rail-track laying and maintenance equipment operators

11

Rail-track laying and maintenance equipment operators

11

Miscellaneous construction and related workers

11

Installation, maintenance, and repair occupations

117

Supervisors of installation, maintenance, and repair workers

11

First-line supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers

11

First-line supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers

11

Vehicle and mobile equipment mechanics, installers, and repairers

85

Automotive technicians and repairers

53

Automotive service technicians and mechanics

53

Miscellaneous vehicle and mobile equipment mechanics, installers, and repairers

11

Other installation, maintenance, and repair occupations

21

Industrial machinery installation, repair, and maintenance workers

11

Industrial machinery mechanics

11

Maintenance and repair workers, general

11

Maintenance and repair workers, general

11

Production occupations

96

Textile, apparel, and furnishings workers

11

Other production occupations

43

Transportation and material moving occupations

5334

Supervisors of transportation and material moving workers

21

First-line supervisors of transportation and material moving workers

21

First-line supervisors of helpers, laborers, and material movers, hand

11

First-line supervisors of material-moving machine and vehicle operators

11

Air transportation workers

11

Aircraft pilots and flight engineers

11

Commercial pilots

11

Motor vehicle operators

3523

Driver/sales workers and truck drivers

3019

Driver/sales workers

43

Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers

2315

Light truck drivers

32

Rail transportation workers

11

Miscellaneous rail transportation workers

11

Water transportation workers

11

Sailors and marine oilers

11

Sailors and marine oilers

11

Material moving workers

138

Industrial truck and tractor operators

11

Industrial truck and tractor operators

11

Laborers and material movers

96

Laborers and freight, stock, and material movers, hand

85

Stockers and order fillers

11

Pumping station operators

11

Wellhead pumpers

11

Refuse and recyclable material collectors

11

Refuse and recyclable material collectors

11

Miscellaneous material moving workers

11

Footnotes:
(1) CFOI has used several versions of the Standard Occupation Classification (SOC) system since 2003 to define occupation. For complete information on the version of SOC used in this year, see our definitions page at https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm. Cases where occupation is unknown are included in the total.

NOTE: Data for all years are final. Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. For complete information on how the data are coded and presented see our definitions page at https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatal injury counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.

Table 4. Fatal occupational injuries by selected demographic characteristics, Pennsylvania, 2018–19
Worker characteristics20182019
NumberNumberPercent

Total

177154100

Employee status

Wage and salary workers (1)

13812883

Self-employed (2)

392617

Gender

Men

16514091

Women

12149

Age (3)

Under 16 years

--21

20 to 24 years

975

25 to 34 years

482516

35 to 44 years

322617

45 to 54 years

282919

55 to 64 years

323724

65 years and over

232718

Race or ethnic origin (4)

White, non-Hispanic

14112179

Black or African-American, non-Hispanic

171510

Hispanic or Latino

10138

Asian, non-Hispanic

553

Footnotes:
(1) May include volunteers and workers receiving other types of compensation. Cases where employment status is unknown are included in the counts of wage and salary workers.
(2) Includes self-employed workers, owners of unincorporated businesses and farms, paid and unpaid family workers, and may include some owners of incorporated businesses or members of partnerships.
(3) Information may not be available for all age groups.
(4) Persons identified as Hispanic or Latino may be of any race. The race categories shown exclude data for Hispanics and Latinos. Cases where ethnicity is unknown are included in counts of non-Hispanic workers.

NOTE: Data for all years are final. Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. For complete information on how the data are coded and presented see our definitions page at https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfdef.htm. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatal injury counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, March 23, 2021