Work-related Fatality Trends

Preventable deaths and death rate trends vary by industry. Industry definitions changed in 2003, rendering it inappropriate to compare trends across 2003. To facilitate accurate comparisons, the interactive chart below enables you to select specific industry sectors for a more nuanced analysis.

While examining the data, you might observe a significant decline in the number of fatalities within the Construction and Transportation & Warehousing sectors in both 2008 and 2009. However, the corresponding reduction in fatality rates for these industries during the same period was not as pronounced. It’s crucial to recognize that these two sectors were severely impacted by the recession, and the decrease in fatalities largely mirrors declines in hours worked during this challenging economic period. With the most recent data from 2022, we observe upticks in both the number of deaths and death rates across various industries. Notably, some of the sectors witnessing the most significant increases include:

  • Mining (deaths: +20%; death rate: +11%)
  • Information (deaths: +14%; death rate: +14%)
  • Leisure and Hospitality (deaths: +27%; death rate: +20%)

Nevertheless, certain industries saw declines despite the overall increase in both the total number of preventable deaths and the death rate in 2022. The sectors demonstrating improvements include:

  • Other services (deaths: -17%; death rate: -23%)
  • Agriculture, forestry, and fishing (deaths: -8%; death rate: -4%)

Please note: BLS did not report fatality data at the private industry level for several major industry sectors starting in 2019. BLS indicates these industries did not meet publishable standards for 2019. BLS suppresses industry estimates if they don’t meet certain criteria for both reliability and confidentiality. Also, BLS did not report the number of intentional injury deaths for several major industry sectors in 2019 through 2022. Because the number of intentional deaths is relatively small compared to preventable deaths, NSC used historic data to estimate the number of intentional deaths in order to estimate the number of preventable/unintentional deaths.

  • Chart
  • Data Table
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