Pennsylvania workers may be interested to learn that 5,190 people died on the job in 2016, according to the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries. This was a 6 percent increase over the previous year’s number of on-the-job fatalities. In 2016, logging was the most dangerous job, resulting in 91 deaths. Fishing came in second with 86 fatal injuries per 100,000 workers. In third, flight engineers had a fatal injury rate of 55.5 per 100,000 workers.
The leading cause of death on the job was transportation accidents, which accounted for about 40 percent of all workplace fatalities. Workplace violence surpassed the category of falls, trips and slips to become the second leading cause of death in the workplace. While many may attribute workplace violence to disgruntled employees or former employees, the majority of workplace violence was caused by robberies and assaults.
Women accounted for a higher percentage of workplace violence victims. Even so, women were overall still far less likely than males to die while working.
Pennsylvania employers are responsible for providing workers’ compensation insurance, which covers employees in the event that they suffer injuries while on the job. However, there may be cases where injured employees are denied benefits even though the injury was properly reported. If an employee suffers serious injuries while at work and their workers’ compensation benefits are denied, an attorney may file an appeal on their behalf. If an employee was killed in an accident while at work, a lawyer could work with the victim’s family to obtain appropriate benefits.