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News Release Information

22-382-ATL
Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Contacts Technical information: Media contact:
  • (404) 893-4220

Fatal Occupational Injuries in South Carolina — 2020

Fatal work injuries totaled 102 in 2020 for South Carolina, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that the number of work-related fatalities in South Carolina was down from the previous year. (See chart 1.) Fatal occupational injuries in the state have ranged from a high of 139 in 1999 to a low of 63 in 2012.

Nationwide, a total of 4,764 fatal work injuries were recorded in 2020, an 11-percent decrease from 5,333 in 2020, according to the results from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI). The 4,764 fatal occupational injuries in 2020 represents the lowest annual number since 2013. 


Fatal event or exposure

In South Carolina, transportation incidents resulted in 42 fatal work injuries and accounted for 41 percent of all fatal workplace injuries in the state. (See chart 2 and table 1.)  Worker deaths from transportation incidents were similar to the previous year.

Contact with objects and equipment was the second-most frequent fatal work event with 16 fatalities, up from 13 in the prior year. Falls, slips, and trips resulted in 15 work-related deaths, compared to 17 in 2019.

Nationally, transportation incidents were the most frequent fatal workplace event in 2020, accounting for 37 percent of fatal work injuries. Falls, slips, and trips was the second-most common fatal event at 17 percent.


Industry

The private construction industry sector had the highest number of fatalities in South Carolina with 23, down from 27 in the previous year. (See table 2.) The specialty trade contractors subsector accounted for 15 of the 23 fatal workplace injuries in the construction industry.

The private transportation and warehousing industry sector had 18 fatal workplace injuries. Transportation incidents accounted for 13, or 72 percent, of the fatal injuries in this industry. The general freight trucking industry group accounted for 8 of the 18 fatal workplace injuries in the transportation and warehousing industry.   

Occupation

The transportation and material moving occupational group had the highest number of fatal workplace injuries with 29. (See table 3.) Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers accounted for 21 of the 29 fatalities among transportation and material moving workers. The construction and extraction occupational group had the second highest number of fatal workplace injuries with 26. Construction trades workers suffered 20 of the work-related deaths within the construction and extraction group.

Additional highlights

  • Men accounted for 89 percent of the work-related fatalities in South Carolina, compared to the national rate of 92 percent. (See table 4.) Transportation incidents made up 41 percent of the fatalities for men in South Carolina.

  • White non-Hispanics accounted for 56 percent of those who died from a workplace injury. Nationwide, this group accounted for 61 percent of work-related deaths.

  • Workers 25-54 years old accounted for 56 percent of the state’s work-related fatalities in 2020, similar to the on-the-job fatalities nationally.

  • Of the 102 fatal work injuries in South Carolina, 71 percent worked for wages and salaries; the remainder were self-employed. Transportation incidents were the most frequent fatal event for wage and salary workers and for self-employed workers.

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

CFOI reports fatal workplace injuries only. These may include fatal workplace injuries complicated by an illness such as COVID-19. Fatal workplace illnesses not precipitated by an injury are not in scope for CFOI. CFOI does not report any illness related information, including 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 2020 national data, over 21,600 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 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 South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, 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; Telecommunications Relay Service: 7-1-1.

Table 1. Fatal occupational injuries by event or exposure, South Carolina, 2019–20
Event or exposure (1) 2019 2020
Number Number Percent

Total

108 102 100

Violence and other injuries by persons or animals

27 -- --

Transportation incidents

41 42 41

Pedestrian vehicular incident

7 5 5

Pedestrian struck by vehicle on side of road

-- 1 1

Roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicle

28 30 29

Roadway collision with other vehicle

17 15 15

Nonroadway incident involving motorized land vehicles

-- 4 4

Nonroadway collision with object other than vehicle

-- 1 1

Fires and explosions

1 -- --

Falls, slips, trips

17 15 15

Falls to lower level

14 15 15

Fall through surface or existing opening

4 3 3

Other fall to lower level

10 12 12

Exposure to harmful substances or environments

9 12 12

Exposure to other harmful substances

5 9 9

Contact with objects and equipment

13 16 16

Struck by object or equipment

7 9 9

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

5 6 6

Overexertion and bodily reaction

-- -- --

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 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, South Carolina, 2019–20
Industry (1) 2019 2020
Number Number Percent

Total

108 102 100

Private industry (2)

96 89 87

Goods producing

-- -- --

Natural resources and mining

6 9 9

Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting

6 8 8

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

-- 1 1

Construction

27 23 23

Construction

27 23 23

Specialty trade contractors

-- 15 15

Manufacturing

-- 10 10

Service providing (4)

-- -- --

Trade, transportation, and utilities

-- 25 25

Wholesale trade

2 3 3

Retail trade

10 4 4

Transportation and warehousing

-- 18 18

Truck transportation

-- 14 14

General freight trucking

-- 8 8

Support activities for transportation

-- 4 4

Information

-- -- --

Financial activities

-- -- --

Professional and business services

14 12 12

Professional, scientific, and technical services

2 4 4

Administrative and support and waste management and remediation services

12 8 8

Educational and health services

-- -- --

Leisure and hospitality

6 3 3

Accommodation and food services

3 3 3

Food services and drinking places

-- 3 3

Other services, except public administration

3 4 4

Government (5)

12 13 13

Federal government

5 6 6

State government

2 1 1

Local government

5 6 6

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 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 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, South Carolina, 2019–20
Occupation (1) 2019 2020
Number Number Percent

Total

108 102 100

Management occupations

3 4 4

Business and financial operations occupations

-- -- --

Computer and mathematical occupations

-- -- --

Architecture and engineering occupations

-- -- --

Life, physical, and social science occupations

1 -- --

Community and social service occupations

-- -- --

Legal occupations

-- -- --

Educational instruction and library occupations

-- -- --

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media occupations

-- -- --

Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations

-- -- --

Healthcare support occupations

-- -- --

Protective service occupations

-- 11 11

Law enforcement workers

-- 7 7

Police officers

-- 7 7

Other protective service workers

-- 4 4

Food preparation and serving related occupations

-- -- --

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations

6 -- --

Personal care and service occupations

2 -- --

Sales and related occupations

7 -- --

Office and administrative support occupations

3 -- --

Farming, fishing, and forestry occupations

-- 4 4

Construction and extraction occupations

22 26 25

Construction trades workers

16 20 20

Installation, maintenance, and repair occupations

11 7 7

Production occupations

4 -- --

Transportation and material moving occupations

39 29 28

Motor vehicle operators

31 21 21

Driver/sales workers and truck drivers

27 21 21

Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers

22 21 21

Material moving workers

5 6 6

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 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 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, South Carolina, 2019–20
Worker characteristics 2019 2020
Number Number Percent

Total

108 102 100

Employee status

Wage and salary workers (1)

78 72 71

Self-employed (2)

30 30 29

Gender

Men

101 91 89

Women

7 11 11

Age (3)

20 to 24 years

10 4 4

25 to 34 years

21 21 21

35 to 44 years

20 13 13

45 to 54 years

22 23 23

55 to 64 years

20 23 23

65 years and over

13 15 15

Race or ethnic origin (4)

White, non-Hispanic

61 57 56

Black or African-American, non-Hispanic

28 30 29

Hispanic or Latino

15 -- --

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 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 15, 2022