COVID-19 Notice: Block O’Toole & Murphy has returned to full, in-person operation in accordance with safety regulations put forward by New York State and CDC health officials. Our attorneys continue to provide quality legal representation and are available to discuss your case in person, over the phone, email, or video. Read more from our partners.

Close Menu  X

  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Construction & Work Injuries
  4.  » Ten Most Dangerous Jobs in the United States

Ten Most Dangerous Jobs in the United States


According to a recent article in Business Insider, the most dangerous jobs in the United States involve logging, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Fortunately, there are few if any logging jobs in New York City. Other similarly dangerous occupations reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) include fishing and related jobs, mining and farming – other industries with few instances in New York. However, plenty of dangerous occupations remain for NYC workers.

The article calculated the danger of a fatality based on the number of workers in each category divided by the number of deaths. For example, loggers have a fatality rate of 91.3 deaths per 100,000 workers. The fishing industry has a fatality rate of 75.

Airplane Pilots

For example, airline pilots and flight engineers are in the third most dangerous category, and New York is home to three of the largest airports in the country. Many planes take off and land here, and many pilots and engineers are based in the New York City area. Given the sheer volume of private and commercial planes taking off, landing, taxiing, and circling, it is almost surprising that there are not more fatalities. In 2013, 69 pilots and engineers were killed on the job across the United States.


Roofers experience the fourth highest number of on-the-job fatalities. In May of 2013, the BLS estimated that about 1,460 roofers work in the New York metro area. In 2013, there were approximately 69 on-the-job fatalities among roofers across the United States.


The next most dangerous job is refuse and recyclable materials collectors – workers once known as garbage men or sanitation workers. Nationwide, this group experienced 33 work-related fatalities in 2013. Between January 2000 and June 2014, 17 sanitation workers died on the job in New York City.

Truck Drivers

Semi-truck and delivery van drivers are next on the list of dangerous jobs. With a fatality rate of 22 per 100,000, one might think that trucking is a relatively safe industry. However, there are at least 3.5 million tractor trailer and other truck drivers in the country. A death rate of 22 per 100,000 means that almost 750 truckers died in 2013.

Electrical Line Workers & Construction Laborers

The next most dangerous job in America is employees who work with electric power lines. Finally, the 10th most dangerous job in the U.S. is construction laborer. These are the workers who clean and prepare sites, dig trenches, set braces to support the sides of excavations, erect scaffolding, and clean up construction sites. To perform their duties, they operate hand and power tools of all kinds. There are approximately 100,000 construction workers in New York City. Based on the national fatality rate reported by the BLS, about 18 workers die every year in the five boroughs of New York.

These are rates and averages. What these numbers do not show is the impact of these deaths on each worker’s family and community. When these deaths are caused by the negligence of employers, family members may be able to file wrongful death lawsuits.

If you were injured while working in any job, “dangerous” or not, call Block O’Toole & Murphy at 212-736-5300.