The total number of reported fatal work injuries fell in 2000, despite an increase in overall employment.
That decrease, however, doesn’t mean that the Labour Department and employers can afford to be complacent. There is still an average of 16 workplace deaths each day – a total of 5,915 in 2000.
The statistics also show that certain workers are more likely to die on the job. The number of fatal work injuries among Caucasian and African-American workers declined last year from 1999, but those for Hispanic workers increased by 24 per cent. Employment for Hispanic workers only increased by 6 per cent in 2000.
To counteract this trend, the Labour Department says that it will increase programs in Florida and Texas to improve safety in the workplace.
The highest number of fatal work injuries occurs in the construction, mining, agriculture and transportation industries.