25
May 2016
By

Which Massachusetts Workers Face the Highest Injury Risks?

Any worker could get injured on-the-job. The accident may require hospitalization. A worker may lose a limb or an eye. Certain professions, however, are more dangerous than others and are more likely to result in a worker experiencing a severe, permanent injury. Hard Work 3

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently imposed new reporting requirements on employers specifically in situations where a worker experienced an amputation, lost an eye, or had to be given inpatient care in a hospital. New OSHA reporting requirements went into effect starting the first of January in 2015.

With the data collected from states in which OSHA rules apply (not those administering their own safety and health programs), OSHA has now prepared a report showing how many workers suffer serious injuries on-the-job. OSHA also has broken down the data to reveal which industries had the highest numbers of serious injuries and thus presented the most significant risk to workers.

Which Workers Face the Greatest Risks of Serious Injury?

According to OSHA data on hospitalizations, amputations, and incidents in which workers lost an eye, there were 10,388 incidents reported over the course of 2015 in states where reports were required.   This included 2,644 amputations and 7,636 incidents in which workers were hurt badly enough that they needed to be hospitalized for treatment.  Based on this data, around 30 workers across all sectors experience a serious workplace injury every day.

Manufacturing and construction proved to be the two industries in which the risk of serious injuries was greatest. In total, 26 percent of hospitalized workers were doing manufacturing jobs when they suffered an injury severe enough to require admission to a hospital. This was the sector from which the most hospitalizations arose.

Construction workers had the second highest number of hospitalizations. In total, 19 percent of workers whose injuries were bad enough to require inpatient care had been working construction at the time of the accident leading to harm.

Amputations were far more likely to happen in the manufacturing sector as compared with any other field. A total of 57 percent of the workers who lost body parts were doing their manufacturing jobs at the time of the incident. Construction work again was the second most dangerous sector for amputations, with 10 percent of all amputations experienced by construction workers.

The data shows these industries remain persistently high-risk for workers, especially when it comes to life changing injuries like losing a limb. Unfortunately, the actual risk may be significantly greater even than this new OSHA report shows. OSHA estimates around 50 percent of the amputations and hospitalizations which should be reported to the agency are not actually reported. That’s because employers don’t always know about reporting requirements or they assess the risk of being found out is not high enough to make it worth their time to report such injuries.

With such significant dangers in construction and manufacturing, employers clearly need to do more to protect their workers from harm.

Contact a Fall River, Massachusetts workplace accident lawyer at the Law Offices of Deborah G. Kohl at 508-677-4900 or visit http://www.dgklaw.com to schedule your free consultation. Serving Fall River, surrounding areas in Massachusetts, and clients in Rhode Island. 

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