Slideshows

Most Dangerous Jobs 2011

Jobs That Can Kill You

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Some jobs are tough, some can be deadly. Some jobs are stressful, but exposure to dangerous situations and hostile environments can contribute significantly to the chance of a fatal on-the-job accident. According to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4,547 lives were lost on the job in 2010, which is about the same as 2009, which had a final count of 4,551. The total is still down from 5,214 in 2008. The BLS attributes this overall reduction to declines in employment and slow
Photo: Getty Images

Some jobs are tough, some can be deadly. Some jobs are stressful, but exposure to dangerous situations and hostile environments can contribute significantly to the chance of a fatal on-the-job accident.

An average of 12 workers die on the job every day. According to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 4,547 lives were lost on the job in 2010, about the same as the previous year, which had a final count of 4,551. The total is down from 5,214 in 2008.

The BLS attributes this overall reduction to declines in employment and slow growth in total hours worked in some historically high-risk industries.

The rate of fatal work injuries for U.S. workers in 2010 was 3.5 per 100,000 full-time employees.

Mining and police work saw increases in work-related fatalities last year. Disasters at a U.S. coal mine and aboard an oil rig operated by BP pushed mining up the list to 172 fatalities in 2010 from 99 the previous year. Fatalities among police officers jumped 40 percent to 134 in 2010 from 96 a year earlier.

As for causes, deaths from fires more than doubled to 109 in 2010 from 53 the previous year, the highest count since 2003. 

So, what are the deadliest jobs in the country? Click ahead to find out.

By Jill Weinberger
Posted 01 September 2011

10. Driver/Sales Workers and Truck Drivers

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Fatality rate: 21.8/100,000 Total deaths: 683Annual mean salary: $40,410 Truck drivers travel long distances for many hours, increasing the likelihood of highway accidents.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 21.8/100,000
Total deaths: 683
Annual mean salary: $40,410

Truck drivers travel long distances for many hours, increasing the likelihood of highway accidents.

9. Refuse and Recycling Collectors

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Fatality rate: 29.8/100,000 Total deaths: 26 Annual mean salary: $34,310
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 29.8/100,000
Total deaths: 26
Annual mean salary: $34,310

Despite more comprehensive safety measures that have helped to lower the fatality rate since 2006, garbage collectors are still exposed to harmful chemicals and dangerous machinery.

8. Roofers

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Fatality rate: 32.4 / 100,000 Total deaths: 57 Annual mean salary: $37,880 Falls from ladders, scaffolds and roofs are the main cause of fatal accidents in this occupation.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 32.4/100,000
Total deaths: 57
Annual mean salary: $37,880

Falls from ladders, scaffolds, and roofs are the main cause of fatal accidents in this occupation.

7. Mining Machine Operators

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Fatality rate: 38.7 / 100,000 Total deaths: 23 Annual mean salary: $44,010 Mining Machine Operators work with the mining machines that rip the coal, metal and rock, etc from the mine face and they load it onto conveyors. Because they are working in the tunnels and mine shafts, possible dangers include the possibility of cave-in, mine fires, explosion, or exposure to harmful gases.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 38.7/100,000
Total deaths: 23
Annual mean salary: $44,010

Mining machine operators work with machines that rip the coal, metal, and rock from the mine and then load it onto conveyors. Because they are working in tunnels and mine shafts, the dangers include the possibility of a cave-in, mine fires, explosions, or exposure to harmful gases.

6. Coal Miners

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Fatality rate: 38.9 / 100,000 Total deaths: 43 Annual mean salary: $43,240 Coal miners face the same dangers as mining machine operators, the possibility of cave-in, mine fire, explosion, or exposure to harmful gases. In addition dust generated from drilling places miners at risk for developing lung diseases. Last April, an explosion at the Upper Big Branch coal Mine in West Virginia owned by Massey Energy Co killed 29 miners.
Photo: Tyler Stableford | Getty Images

Fatality rate: 38.9/100,000
Total deaths: 43
Annual mean salary: $43,240

Coal miners face the same dangers as mining machine operators: the possibility of cave-in, mine fires, explosions, or exposure to harmful gases. In addition, dust generated from drilling places miners at risk for developing lung diseases.

Last April, an explosion at the Upper Big Branch coal mine in West Virginia, which is owned by Massey Energy, killed 29 miners.

5. Farmers and Ranchers

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Fatality rate: 41.4 / 100,000 Total deaths: 300 Annual mean salary: $42,710 Farming may sound tame, but working with heavy machinery and harmful chemicals makes this job especially dangerous.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 41.4/100,000
Total deaths: 300
Annual mean salary: $42,710

Farming and ranching may sound tame, but working with heavy machinery, harmful chemicals, and large animals makes this job especially dangerous.

4. Miscellaneous Extraction Workers

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Fatality rate: 64.2 / 100,000 Total deaths: 26 Annual mean salary: $43,870 (Note: Salary taken for construction and extraction occupations) Extraction workers examine and inspect work progress, equipment, and construction sites to verify safety and to ensure that specifications are met. The tasks of extraction workers involve physical labor while building, highway, and heavy construction projects, tunnel and shaft excavations, and demolition sites. Use of heavy power tools and exposure to hazard
Photo: Huntstock | Getty Images

Fatality rate: 64.2/100,000
Total deaths: 26
Annual mean salary: $43,870
(Note: Salary includes construction and extraction occupations.)

Extraction workers examine and inspect work progress, equipment, and construction sites to verify safety and to ensure that specifications are met. The tasks of extraction workers involve physical labor while overseeing highway and heavy-construction projects, tunnel and shaft excavations, and demolition sites. Use of heavy power tools and exposure to hazardous materials contribute to the danger of this job.

3. Pilots and Flight Engineers

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Fatality rate: 70.6/ 100,000 Total deaths: 78 Annual mean salary $115,300 Particularly at risk are test pilots who fly new or experimental planes, crop-duster pilots that may be exposed to harmful chemicals and those who operate rescue helicopters.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 70.6/100,000
Total deaths: 78
Annual mean salary: $115,300

Particularly at risk of fatal injuries are test pilots who fly new or experimental planes, crop-duster pilots who may be exposed to harmful chemicals, and those who operate rescue helicopters.

2. Logging Workers

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Fatality rate: 91.9 / 100,000 Total deaths: 59 Annual mean salary: $34,510 Responsible for cutting and hauling trees, logging workers can suffer fatal harm from falling branches and heavy machinery. Bad weather is also a contributing factor.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 91.9/100,000
Total deaths: 59
Annual mean salary: $34,510

Responsible for cutting and hauling trees, logging workers can suffer mortal injury from falling branches and heavy machinery. Bad weather is also a contributing factor.

1. Fishing-Related Workers

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Fatality rate: 116 / 100,000 Total deaths: 29 Annual mean salary: $27,880 This group is at risk of getting entangled in nets and other gear or getting swept overboard. Additionally, injured workers are far from medical attention.
Photo: Getty Images

Fatality rate: 116/100,000
Total deaths: 29
Annual mean salary: $27,880

This group is at risk of getting entangled in nets and other gear, or getting swept overboard. Additionally, injured workers are far from medical attention.

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