Today (April 28) is Workers’ Memorial Day. U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis suggests we take time to reflect on making jobs safe.
The statistics on workplace deaths and injuries in the U.S. are sobering:
- In 2008, 5,071 U.S. workers died from workplace injuries — that’s 14 per day.
- 49,000 deaths annually are attributed to work-related illnesses.
- In 2008, an estimated 4.6 million workers had a nonfatal workplace injury or illness; 40%-50% of these workers were transferred, placed on work restrictions or took time away from work.
- 3.4 million workers were treated in emergency rooms for occupational injuries and illnesses in 2007.
- 94,000 were hospitalized in 2007 from workplace incidents.
- Employers and insurers spent nearly $85 billion on workers’ compensation in 2007.
And those workers’ comp costs are just a fraction of the costs to employers for worker injuries. Other costs include training replacement workers, incident investigations, lost productivity, damaged equipment and property, and legal expenses.
On this Workers’ Memorial Day — and any day at work — what messages are you sending to employees about workplace injuries and deaths? Let us know in the Comments Box below.