Unfortunately, workplace injuries are all too common in the U.S. According to a workplace accident report provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 10,388 incidents involving severe workplace injuries were reported by employers in 2015. That amounts to 30 severe injuries every day.
The 10 Most Common Workplace Injuries
According to workplace injuries statistics provided by OSHA, the top 10 most common non-fatal workplace injuries reported in 2015 were as follows:
- Overexertion, including becoming injured while pushing, pulling, lifting, holding, carrying or throwing items at work.
- Falls, slips and trips, which can occur on wet or dry surfaces.
- Walking into or otherwise coming into contact with an object or piece of equipment.
- Falling (on the same level). These types of injuries are sometimes called “reaction injuries.”
- Being struck by an object or a piece of equipment that fell or was dropped by someone else.
- Overexertion in lifting or lowering objects.
- Falling to a lower level from a roof, staircase, ladder or other height.
- Being exposed to a harmful substance or a harmful environment.
- Becoming caught in, or compressed by, objects or equipment. Clothing, hair, shoes or body parts can all become caught — leading to injuries.
- Repetitive motion injuries, including “microtasks” such as typing.
The Most Dangerous Industries and Occupations
It’s not surprising that the most dangerous industries to work in, judged by workplace accident reports, are manufacturing and construction. Manufacturing injuries accounted for 26 percent of hospitalizations and 57 percent of amputations; and construction injuries were behind 19 percent of hospitalizations and 10 percent of amputations.
In terms of numbers of reported incidents, workers classified as “Foundation, Structure and Building Exterior Contractors” experienced the highest rate of severe injuries on the job.
The next three occupations on the list are also construction related:
- Building equipment contractors
- Support activities for mining
- Nonresidential building construction
Postal service workers came in at No. 5 on the list. Injuries sustained by postal service workers span the list from slipping/tripping and falling to repetitive-use injuries. The postal service relies on the use of machinery and equipment, which can cause severe injuries when not used properly or when safety precautions aren’t taken.
Most Workplace Injuries Are Preventable
Sadly, most workplace injuries and fatal accidents could have been prevented or minimized by employers. Proactive measures to help reduce the risk of becoming injured at work include: using fall-protection equipment; using safety guards and other preventive measures around heavy or dangerous equipment; or strengthening safety training programs.
Injured Workers Have Rights
Workers’ compensation laws provide protection and compensation for workers who are hurt on the job. When an injured employee experiences difficulty with the process, a workplace injury lawyer may be able to help fight for the worker’s rights. The experienced, knowledgeable workplace injury attorneys at Kenneth J. Allen Law Group have helped people across Illinois and Indiana recover the compensation the law says they are entitled to receive. Request a free consultation to review your case with an attorney.