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August 14th, 2013

BLS Reports Increase in Workplace Accident Fatalities in 2011

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has released its revised workplace fatality report for 2011, and the new statistics show a slight increase in the number of workers killed in accidents in 2011. The newer statistics that had been released in 2012 had estimated the total fatality count in 2011 to be 4,609. The revised count places those numbers at 4,693.

Overall in 2011, there were 3.5 fatalities for every 100,000 full-time workers across the country. That was a slight drop from 3.6 fatalities for every 100,000 workers in 2010.

The revised data comes just a few days after horrific workplace disasters reported from across the country. In Texas, the West fertilizer plant explosion that killed 14 people also spotlighted Texas’s dismal workplace safety record.

In the Bureau of Labor Statistics data, contractor fatalities accounted for approximately 12% of all workplace fatalities in 2011. There was also an increase in transportation-related accidents involving workers. These cases increased by approximately 3% from the earlier 2012 number. In 2011, there were 1,100 fatalities linked to work-related motor vehicle accidents.

There were also increases in other types of workplace fatalities including workplace homicides, which killed a total of 460 people in 2011.

In the construction industry, the number of fatalities increased by 17 cases from the early 2012 count. The final fatality count in construction industry accidents for 2011, however, is 5% lower than the 2010 toll. This does indicate that some progress is being made in reducing the number of workers killed in preventable construction site accidents.

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