As they do each November, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has released their report summarizing the 2019 Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses. For the third year in a row, the number of nonfatal injuries and illnesses held steady at 2.8 million.
In fact, the latest data, released November 4, showed that many figures aside from the total recordable cases did not change from 2018, or even from several years prior.
Some of the numbers that held steady include:
- An overall incidence rate of 2.8 cases per 100 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers, which was unchanged from both 2017 and 2018
- The rate of days away from work (DAFW) and the rate of days of job transfer and restriction (DJTR), holding at 0.9 cases and 0.7 cases, respectively, since 2015
- A consistent median number of days away from work across private industry sectors, staying at 8 since 2018
When looking at the data overall, the percentage of each of the seven major injury and illness categories remained relatively the same from 2018. The largest decrease was overexertion (down 0.39%) while slips, trips and falls saw a 0.8% increase, the largest of the group.
Another interesting change the survey notes is the difference in DAFW incidence rates between men and women. Within private industry, the incidence rate for men decreased from 94.3 cases per 10,000 FTE workers to 91.7 cases in 2019, while the rate for women decreased from 83.4 to 80.4 cases.
With nearly 1.8 million more employees from 2018 to 2019, you might expect to see a similar relative increase in occupational injuries and illnesses. Maintaining a consistent rate year over year highlights the importance of safety training.
When safety training, and continued safe practices, are implemented, you can be sure your employees are aware of the correct steps to take to minimize or completely avoid workplace accidents and injuries.