The Indiana Department of Labor today released its preliminary annual Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries report for 2011. The state reported 122 fatal occupational injuries in 2011. While this number is one of the lowest recorded since the report’s inception in 1991, it is up from the state’s preliminary number of 115 for 2010, and the final number of 118 fatalities for that year.
“This three percent increase in workplace fatalities is disappointing and strongly suggests that we have much more work to do in the area of workplace safety at all levels, including government, businesses, and employees alike,” said Lori A. Torres, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Labor. “The Department of Labor continues to focus on our highest priority – the safety of Hoosiers in the workplace, and we charge all employers and employees to rededicate their efforts to employee safety.”
Some findings of the 2011 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries report include:
• Agriculture and mining saw a drop of 33 percent in fatalities in 2011, from 24 in 2010 to 16 in 2011.
• Manufacturing fatalities also decreased in 2011, from 14 in 2010 to 13 in 2011.
• A major challenge is identified in the trucking industry. Truck transportation fatalities increased by 54 percent, from 13 in 2010 to 20 in 2011.
• Conversely, the Healthcare and Social Services and Educational Services sectors combined saw only one death from work injuries in 2011, compared to 14 total fatalities in 2010.
• Violent Acts account for 17 deaths in 2011 and it is now the third largest category.
This preliminary look at workplace fatalities demonstrates the most risky area of employment in Indiana: driving commercial vehicles, automobiles, fork trucks and construction equipment. Exactly one half of all fatalities are transportation related events. Thirty percent (36 fatalities) are highway motor vehicle accidents.
For the full 2011 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries report, visit www.in.gov/dol/2439.htm.