According to the regional commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 163 workplace injuries that proved fatal in Pennsylvania in 2012. She also stated that even though that is a preliminary count, the numbers had declined over the 2011 count by 23. The highest number was in 1994 at 354, and the lowest so far is 2012.

Of the total 2012 fatal work injuries in the state, the main categories were those involving equipment and transportation accidents. A total of 60 percent of all workplace fatalities were attributed to those categories. Within those two categories, 35 fatal occurrences were related to equipment and other objects, and 63 were related to transportation. The former category was up a bit from 33 in 2011, and the latter was down from 68 in 2011.

Besides those two categories, injuries caused by animals or people and violence as well as trips, slips and falls were the other major causes. The figures for the former were down from 28 to 22 from 2011 to 2012. Violence and other fatal injuries were also down from 34 to 23 in that same time period.

Nationwide figures show 4,383 fatal workplace injuries for 2012. That number is also down from 4,593 in 2011, according to the numbers from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries program. U.S. transportation fatal incidents were most common, as in South Carolina, and were responsible for 41 percent of the total nationwide.

When a worker is seriously injured or a family loses a loved one to a workplace accident, they may not understand all of their rights regarding workers’ compensation benefits. An attorney could help them with filing a claim for possible compensation.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Workplace Fatalities in Pennsylvania – 2012”, November 11, 2014