From time to time, people hear of the professions where employees are most likely to suffer harm. This list varies with time as certain industries make safety improvements to reduce the number of workplace injuries and fatalities. Last week, a list of the top 10 most dangerous professions by fatality rate was released.
This list includes some jobs that have long posed risks to workers and others that may not immediately come to readers' minds. A couple of jobs are not common in Pennsylvania, such as commercial fisherman or bush pilot. But many residents of the state are employed in a number of the most dangerous jobs in the country.
Discrete sectors of the broader construction industry, iron working and roofing found themselves on the list. Workers in both professions have to contend with falls, and safety measures have been put in place to reduce the number of workers killed or harmed in that manner. In particular, iron workers have partnered with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to create rules that promote worker safety.
Pennsylvania has an extensive network of highways that transport goods between the Midwest and the East Coast. As readers may suspect, truck drivers suffer a high rate of fatalities from accidents on the road. But readers may not have guessed that another type of driver also made the most dangerous list.
Taxi cab drivers had the tenth most fatalities per 100,000 workers, attributable to car crashes and violence committed by passengers. But as in the truck driving industry, things are becoming safer. National regulations require truckers to take breaks and cap the number of hours they can drive per week. Cab driver statistics are benefitting from a drop in crime and a crackdown on drivers who frequently get into accidents.
Source: CNNMoney.com, "America's most dangerous jobs," Les Christie, Sept. 20, 2012
• Workers' compensation is designed to provide a safety net to those who are injured on the job. You can learn more by visiting our Bucks County workers' compensation claims page.