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Preliminary 2014 Labor Statistics Show a Two Percent Increase in Workplace Fatalities in Massachusetts and Elsewhere

Recently, initial results from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics’ “Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries” were released. According to the Bureau, 4,679, or 3.3 out of every 100,000, workers across the country suffered a fatal job-related injury in 2014. Sadly, that number means about 13 employees were killed at work each day throughout the nation. According to U.S. Secretary of Labor Perez, the 2014 preliminary worker fatality data demonstrates a two percent increase over 2013. He added that the data establishes a need for increased employer compliance with state and federal health and safety regulations.

The construction industry apparently resulted in the highest number of preventable workplace deaths across the U.S. last year. In addition, the number of fatalities occurring in the energy sector was also purportedly on the rise. The Department of Labor has stated it will continue its focus on ensuring employees in these and other job sectors make it home safely at the end of each work day.

Other areas for improvement included private goods-producing industries, which demonstrated a nine percent increase in worker deaths over the past year; mining, which saw a 17 percent increase; agriculture, which rose by as much as 14 percent; and manufacturing, which was reportedly up nine percent since 2013. Fall injuries apparently rose by about 10 percent last year, while deadly workplace accidents for employees aged 55 and over increased by nine percent. Tragically, this means 1,691 of the 4,679 fatal work injuries recorded in the U.S. in 2014 involved older employees.

Women accounted for about eight percent of all individuals killed at work in 2014. African-Americans and Asians also succumbed to job-related harm at a higher rate last year. So-called contract employees suffered a six percent increase in fatal accidents at work, which accounted for an astonishing 17 percent of all on-the-job deaths. Likewise, police officers saw a 17 percent increase in work-related fatalities as well.

Not all of the Bureau’s preliminary data was negative. For example, the number of Hispanic workers killed at work dropped from 817 in 2013 to 789 in 2014. In addition, the number of workplace fatalities for government employees purportedly dropped by 12 percent last year. Still, Secretary Perez stated the workplace fatality rate across the nation was unacceptably high.

If someone you love was killed at work in Massachusetts, you need a diligent Boston workers’ compensation attorney on your side. The skillful lawyers at Kantrovitz & Associates, P.C. are here to help you recover the financial compensation you deserve. To discuss your right to recover workers’ compensation benefits with a knowledgeable advocate, do not hesitate to contact Kantrovitz & Associates, P.C. online or give us a call today at 800-367-0871.

Additional Resources:

Statement from Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez on fatal occupational injuries in 2014, U.S. Department of Labor Statement dated September 17, 2015

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