(Indianapolis, Ind.) – Fewer people died while on the job in Indiana than any other year since the state began tracking workplace deaths.
The Indiana Department of Labor released it’s annual Occupational Fatalities Report Thursday, showing 115 people suffered fatal injuries at work in 2010. It’s the lowest since the department began the report in 1991.
“While a record low is good statistically speaking, for 115 families, their tragic loss defies any statistic,” said Lori A. Torres, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Labor. “That is why there is no higher priority in our agency than safeguarding the lives of working Hoosiers through safety and health initiatives and enforcement programs.”
The leading cause of all workplace fatalities was transportation incidents, accounting for 54 of the 115 deaths. This includes vehicular accidents and persons being struck by a vehicle.
Manufacturing-related deaths declined from 40 in 1997 to just 13 in 2010.
Despite a consistent decrease in workplace deaths over the past 20 years, construction continued to have the highest rate of fatalities (15.61 per 100,000 workers) compared to other non-farm industries (3.34 per 100,000 workers).
Farms were another area of decline. After 20 agricultural crop related fatalities were reported in 2009, there were only 14 in 2010. Five people died in animal-related farm accidents.
A survey of non-fatal workplace injuries will be released by the department later this year.
The full Department of Labor Occupational Fatalities Annual Report can be found online at http://www.in.gov/dol/files/2010_Census_of_Fatal_Occupational_Injuries-_Overview_FINAL.pdf.