Nonfatal workplace injuries among private industry employers in 2008 fell 8% from the previous year.
Injuries and illnesses occurred at a rate of 3.9 cases per 100 equivalent full-time workers. The 2007 rate was 4.2, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
There were 3.7 million total nonfatal injuries and illnesses in 2008 compared to 4 million in 2007.
Occupational injuries and illnesses have declined significantly each year since 2003.
The injury and illness rate was highest among mid-size companies with 50 to 249 employees, and lowest among small companies with fewer than 11 workers.
U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis said she was “cautiously optimistic” about the injury rates. But she also noted that OSHA has launched a National Emphasis Program on Recordkeeping that will help assure the accuracy of injury and illness data reported by employers.