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New Labor Stats Show Transport a Major Liability

Posted on May 10, 2009

This month, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) presented a fifteen-year trend in work-related accidents and fatalities, as the country recognizes National Safety Month. The span of years between 1992 and 2007 shows a declining rate of workplace fatalities, but also spotlights other trends on accident occurrences in the workplace.

Possibly the most telling is a chart showing fatalities per 100,000 workers where the category “Driver/Sales Workers and Truck Drivers” led others by more than 200%.

A corresponding chart of where workplace fatalities occurred showed an alarming 42% occurred in transit.

Manufacturing led in a graph relating non-fatal workplace accidents, with transport-related categories not far behind.

These statistics represent the latest from the BLS, and the agency hopes to release numbers for 2008 in August of this year.

The BLS points out that this does not indicate driving jobs are uncommonly dangerous; rather, the numbers reflect an ever-growing share of the work world as being involved in transport. What these statistics show is how much of America’s business is taking place on the road, with manufacturing relegated to the sidelines. They also indicate that on the road is where U.S. workers can use the most help in terms of advocacy for safety, as well as representation in the case of an accident. Legal council can anticipate claims regarding traffic accidents to be a leading aspect of practicing in workman’s comp situations for a long time to come as American companies continue to invest in sending goods and personnel along U.S. highways.