Non-fatal Workplace Injuries are Declining


Melissa Tonn

Melissa Tonn

After earning an MD from the University of Texas Health Science Center, Melissa Tonn proceeded to Rice University for an MBA. Currently practicing in Dallas, Melissa Tonn is an occupational medicine physician who works with employers to provide workers with occupational injury medical management.

Nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses are reducing, according to the latest workplace injuries report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In 2016, the latest year with documented records, there were about 2.9 million nonfatal workplace injuries in the U.S. private sector, translating to about 2.9 cases per 100 full-time workers, a decimal point less than the number of reported cases in 2015 (three per 100 full-time workers). The figure has been steadily declining since 2003 when there were five incidences per 100 workers.

Interestingly, a significant part of the declining rates in 2016 is attributable to four private industry sectors that saw declines in the number of reported cases. These industries are construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, and retail trade. Manufacturing and retail had less than five injuries per 100 workers while construction and wholesale trade had less than four injuries per 100 workers.