The number of U.S. workers killed on the job in 2015, the latest year available, was the highest in six years, according to the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). There were 4,836 fatal work-related injuries in the U.S. in 2015. This is the highest amount of workplace fatalities since the 5,214 fatal injuries reported in 2008 — meaning a higher chance for workers’ compensation claims. However, the overall rate of fatal work injuries per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers in 2015 was lower than the 2014 rate: 3.38, compared to 3.43.
Ohio workplace fatalities, meanwhile, have ranged from a high of 222 in 1999 to a low of 137 in 2009. They totaled 202 in 2015.
Workplace Fatality Statistics
The most recent national BLS report, which is released every December for the previous calendar year, also revealed that:
- Workers age 65 and older incurred 650 fatal injuries in 2015, which is the second-largest for this age population since the census began in 1992;
- Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers recorded 745 fatal injuries, the most of any occupation;
- Roadway incident fatalities increased 9% over 2014 figures, accounting for more than one-quarter of all workplace fatalities in 2015;
- Private construction industry deaths (937) represented the highest amount for this group since 2008, though private oil and gas extraction industries reported 38% fewer deaths in 2015 than 2014;
- Self-employed workers had a fatal injury rate that was four times higher (13.1 fatalities per 100,000 workers) than the rate for wage and salary workers.
Most Common Types of Ohio Workplace Fatalities
Men are more likely to be killed at work, accounting for 89% of workplace fatalities in Ohio in 2015. White people also accounted for 84% of Ohio workers who died from a workplace injury that year, while nationally, they only represent 67% of related deaths.
Transportation incidents account for both the most Ohio and national workplace fatalities. In Ohio, 92 people died in a transportation incident, and combined with slips and falls or contact with objects and equipment, they accounted for 74% of workplace fatalities.
Nationally, half of roadway incidents involve a semi, tractor-trailer, or tanker truck. Of those not happening on the road, most often, a farm tractor was involved.
Here’s more of how Ohio breaks down in terms of the incident that led to the workplace fatality:
- 46% of workplace fatalities in Ohio are due to a transportation incident;
- 14% occur from slips, trips, and falls;
- Another 14% occur after contact with an object or equipment;
- 13% are caused by violence and other injuries by people or animals (including suicides);
- 12% were classified as “other incidents,” including fires and explosions, exposure to electricity, and overexertion.
Filing a Claim for a Workplace Injury or Fatality
Should you or a member of your family suffer a workplace accident, injury, or fatality in Ohio, the attorneys of Plevin & Gallucci have the in-depth knowledge and experience to represent your interests and be sure you receive the compensation to which you are entitled. There are a few key things you should know about dealing with a legal claim for a workplace injury or fatality.
Your employer is responsible for ensuring a safe workplace. “Making a living shouldn’t have to cost you your life,” says Dr. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health. “Workplace fatalities, injuries, and illnesses are preventable. Safe jobs happen because employers make the choice to fulfill their responsibilities and protect their workers.”
It is important to understand that not all wrongful death cases are the same. In some instances, there are issues as to who is a dependent and entitled to benefits versus other cases where the issue is not who is a dependent, but rather, what benefits dependents are entitled to receive.
Investigate to ensure that all responsible parties are held responsible. When dealing with a wrongful death matter, there are often considerations beyond just workers’ compensation benefits. While workers’ compensation benefits can sometimes exceed $1 million in a wrongful death case, it is important to consider product liability, employer liability, negligence of third parties, and any other potential claims. Family members should take the necessary steps to make sure that all claims relative to all parties with potential responsibility for the death of their loved one are properly investigated.
Get Help from an Ohio Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today
Plevin & Gallucci has won millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements on behalf of injured and deceased Ohio workers. Call us today at 1-855-4-PLEVIN or fill out our quick online form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.