There were 152 fatal occupational injuries in the New York-Northern New Jersey and Long Island Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area (SMSA) in 2013, the last year for which full statistics are available. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), this represents a decline of 32 over the number reported for 2012.
The New York Region Has the Most Workplace Deaths of Any Large SMSA
That’s the good news. However, the bad news is that fatal occupational injuries in the New York SMSA are still far greater than those in any other of the largest 10 regions in the United States by a wide margin. The next highest number, for Los Angeles, is 102 deaths.
What Are the Common Causes of Workplace Fatalities?
How do the New York numbers reveal? The largest number of deaths occurred in the transportation industry – 49. And this is true in eight out of the ten largest metro areas reported – transportation accidents caused the great number of deaths in each of those regions. However, some SMSAs had even higher percentages of transportation-related deaths: Miami and Chicago both had more deaths in transportation-related work accidents than New York City.
Workplace violence was the second-greatest cause of workplace fatalities in New York City. Again, other cities show different numbers. While about 25 percent of workplace fatalities in New York were the result of workplace violence, Washington, D.C., Boston and Atlanta all had higher percentages of this type of fatality.
The third category – falls, slips and trips – caused around 20 percent of workplace fatalities in the city and region. The majority of these involved falls to a lower level.
How Does NYC Compare to the Rest of the United States?
Compared to the rest of the country, as opposed to the other 10 largest SMSAs, New York has fewer transportation deaths, more workplace violence deaths, more falls, fewer deaths caused by contact with equipment, and about the same in all other categories. Overall, worker deaths in this region represented slightly more than three percent of the national total of 4,405 fatalities.
Other Information About New York City Workplace Fatalities
What else do we know about workplace deaths 2013 in the New York City region?
- The largest number of the deaths occurred in the trade, transportation and utilities sector, with 51 deaths in the SMSA. Of these 51 deaths, 21 were the result of workplace violence and 21 were caused by transportation incidents.
- The construction industry had the second highest number of fatalities, with 36 in 2013. Half of the deaths were the result of slips, falls and trips.
- Ninety-five percent of workplace deaths in the New York region were among men. Most of the incidents among men were related to transportation.
- Deaths among Hispanic and Latino workers were down slightly over the previous year – 41 in 2013 compared to 43 in 2012.
- Older workers accounted for 37 percent of workplace fatalities in the region, compared to 32 percent nationally.
A caveat: These numbers will almost certainly change when the final 2013 statistics become available.