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Fatal Injuries in US Workplaces Rise

3 car crash

Each year, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes a report detailing the number of deaths on the job in the US, as well as their causes. The 2016 report has recently been released, and it shows that more workers are dying on the job nationwide. The report also shows that the most common causes of workplace deaths have changed. Read on to learn more about these changes, and contact a dedicated New Jersey worker injury lawyer for help if you’ve been injured on the job.

Highest number of workplace deaths since 2008

The report published by the BLS shows that 5,190 American workers died in the workplace in 2016. This is a 7% increase over the 2015 total of 4,836. 2016 was the third year in a row that fatal injuries in the workplace have risen. 2016 was also the first time that over 5,000 people were fatally injured on the job since 2008. The rate of fatal injuries among workers was 3.6 for every 100,000 workers. This is the highest rate of worker fatal injury since 2010.

After the release of these numbers, the deputy assistant secretary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Loren Sweatt, announced that OSHA “will work to address these trends through enforcement, compliance assistance, education and training, and outreach.” Sweatt noted, “America’s workers deserve better.”

More workers dying in violent incidents

The top cause of fatal workplace injuries in 2016 remained transportation-related incidents, such as car and truck accidents on the job. 2,083 deaths, or 40% of all on-the-job fatalities, occurred in an accident involving transportation. Motor vehicle-related incidents are typically the top cause of death, but the second-greatest cause of fatal injuries surprised many experts: violence and other injuries caused by persons or animals. 866 American workers were killed at work by an act of violence in 2016, which is a 23% increase over the total number of deaths caused by violence in 2015.  500 of these deaths were homicides, and another 291 were suicides. This is the largest number of on-the-job suicides recorded since 1992, when the census began reporting on this data. When workplaces do too little to protect their workers from injury by outside forces, or when an independent contractor or other third party causes serious injury in the workplace, workers may have a legal claim for money damages outside of the workers’ compensation system. A knowledgeable New Jersey injury attorney can help you determine if you have a claim for damages after an on-the-job injury.

For assistance in recovering the damages you’re owed after getting hurt on the job, contact the knowledgeable and effective New Jersey personal injury attorney Andrew R. Jacobs for a free consultation at 973-532-9681.

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