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Worker injury and illness rates on the decline

Pennsylvania residents might be interested to learn about some of the key findings from a survey that was conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The federal agency recently announced that there were over three million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses in 2013, according to statistics that it had compiled. The data was gathered from private industry employers and concerned serious injuries and illnesses that were reported by full-time workers.

The assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health said that the findings from the survey were encouraging because they demonstrated a decline in injury rates for workers. For the past 11 years, statisticians have noticed that there has been a significant decline in workplace injury rates every year except 2012. However, the assistant secretary noted that the three million workers who did suffer from injuries in 2013 could not be ignored.

An important point to note about the survey was that the decline in injury rates was only found to be significant in certain industries. While there were significantly fewer injuries and illnesses reported in the manufacturing, utilities and retail trade sectors, injury and illness rates remained statistically unchanged in every other sector of private industry. The survey also found that injury rates declined among state and local government workers in 2013.

Most workers who are injured on the job are covered by workers' compensation insurance. After an accident, an injured worker can claim workers' compensation benefits in most cases regardless of who was responsible for their injuries. Many workers who have been severely injured decide to seek the help of an attorney in filing a workers' compensation claim.

Source: OH&S Online, "Three Million Workplace Injuries and Illnesses in 2013: BLS", December 05, 2014

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