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Fatality Report Indicates Fall Accidents are Most Common Cause of Worker Deaths at Massachusetts Job Sites in 2010

Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyers are concerned about the number of workplace fatalities that are taking place after sifting through the recently released 2010 Fatal Work Injury Report provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Accidents can happen but they shouldn’t occur at work, especially when they take the life of a dedicated employee. Employers often take shortcuts, especially in a time of economic crisis, which puts the safety of workers at risk while they are performing jobs that need protective equipment or gear to protect them from injury.
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Though fatal occupational injuries in Boston and elsewhere in Massachusetts are down slightly in 2010 at 51 deaths reported according to the report, there is still a grave concern about the number of fatalities reported nationwide. The 2010 preliminary death count from work injuries was 4,547 compared to the 2009 final total of 4,551. The downside — the 2010 total is estimated to rise by 3 percent as it consistently has the past three years from when the preliminary totals are given to the final report. The 2010 final report will be released in early 2012.

It is no secret that a company’s economic stability can play a hand in the welfare of its employees. There are no ‘safe’ jobs available in any industry unless proper precautions are taken to prevent work injuries from occurring on the clock. Most jobs require some sort of risky performance, like climbing, stacking, transporting, handling dangerous chemicals, or operating heavy machinery or power tools which can lead to a high rate of injury.

If we were to examine 2010 fatal work injuries categorized by incident, event or exposure, the preliminary Census of Occupational Injury report would convey the following:

  • Transportation: Nationwide, there were a total of 1,766 transportation-related deaths on the job in 2010. Almost 2 out of every 5 fatal work deaths were from an accident related to transportation. Massachusetts reported 14 fatal transportation work-related accidents in 2010 which was the second most of any category.
  • Assaults and Violent Acts: Roughly 18 percent of deaths at work nationwide in 2010 were related to homicides or violence. Violent acts or assaults towards women which resulted in death on the job rose 13 percent compared to a 6 percent decrease overall in the United States. A total of 808 homicides were committed at work nationwide. Massachusetts reported 12 homicidal deaths at work in 2010.
  • Struck-by or Contact with Equipment and Objects: Nationally, 732 workers were killed by equipment-related accidents or by contact with an object causing the accident in 2010. Massachusetts reported a total of 4 fatal incidents at work when equipment or an object was related to the cause of death.
  • Falls: Falls were the leading cause of death for injured workers in Massachusetts in 2010. A total of 15 fatalities occurred at work as a result of a fall. Nationally, there were a total of 635 workers killed by falls on the job.
  • Harmful Environments or Substances: Workers in Massachusetts who died from exposure to a hazardous substance or environment were totaled at 5 compared to 409 fatal deaths nationwide.
  • Explosions and Fires: A total of 187 workers nationwide were killed by fires and explosions. No reported worker fatalities were caused by a fire or explosion in Massachusetts in 2010.


Work injuries and occupational fatalities are not something that should be taken lightly. If you were subjected to an unsafe work environment resulting in injury or weren’t provided with proper training or protective equipment to perform your job safely, contact an experienced law firm that handles workers’ compensation claims in Boston or throughout Massachusetts. For a free consultation with an experienced attorney at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC call 1-877-617-5333 today.

More Blog Entries:

Effects of Hurricane Irene Increase Risks of Personal Injury in Boston for Cleanup Crews, Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, August 29, 2011.

Teen Summer Jobs Resulting in Increased Risks for Work-Related Injuries in Boston, Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, August 20, 2011.

Construction Workers Face High-Risk of Potentially Fatal Work Accidents in Massachusetts This Summer, Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, August 12, 2011.