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BLS releases 2022 workplace fatalities report

On Behalf of | Apr 1, 2024 | Workers' Compensation

The number of workers killed in on-the-job accidents in Rhode Island and around the country increased by 5.7% in 2022 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A report released in December 2023 by the government fact-finding agency revealed that 5,486 workers lost their lives in workplace accidents in 2022. In 2021, 5,190 workers were killed in on-the-job accidents. The fatal injury rate per 100,000 workers also increased. That figure was 3.6 in 2021. In 2022 it was 3.7.

High-risk occupations

These figures mean that a worker was killed every 96 minutes in 2022. In 2021, a worker died every 101 minutes. Transportation accidents were the most common cause of workplace fatalities in 2022, and the occupations with the highest fatality rates were, truck drivers, construction workers and miners. More than a third of the workers killed in 2022 died in transportation accidents, and fatalities among construction workers rose by 11%.

Alarming trends

The BLS report also revealed some alarming trends. The number of workers who died as the result of violence or after being physically attacked by people or animals rose by 11.6% in 2022. Even more worrying was an 8.9% increase in workplace homicides. The data also shows that drug use and suicide are becoming more common in American workplaces. The number of workers who took their own lives while on the job and the number of workers who succumbed to unintentional overdoses both increased by 13.1% in 2022. When workers are killed while on the job, their families may be entitled to workers’ compensation death benefits.

A sobering report

The most recent BLS workplace fatalities report makes for sobering reading. Workplace deaths are increasing despite improvements in medical science and safety equipment, and the figures suggest that many workers are struggling to cope with the pressures they face. Workplace homicides rose sharply in 2022, and so did on-the-job overdoses and suicides.