Safety & Compliance

CDC: Older Truckers and Other Workers Suffer More Highway Deaths

August 28, 2013

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Highway transportation incidents are the leading cause of occupational fatalities in the United States, with the highest fatality rates occurring among workers age 65 or older, according to a new Centers for Disease Control report.

After analyzing data from 2003 through 2010 and comparing occupational highway transportation deaths among workers aged 18-54, 55–64 and 65 and older, CDC says it found those 65 and older had the highest overall fatality rate and more than three times that of workers aged 18–54 years.

CDC says the results “demonstrate the need to further implement interventions that consider road safety risks specific to older workers.”

During 2003–2010, a total of 11,587 workers aged greater than 18 in the United States died in occupational highway transportation incidents, of whom 3,113, or 26.9%, were 55 or older. Overall, fatality rates were highest among workers 65 and older, with 3.1 deaths per 100,000 people, followed by those aged 55–64 years, with 1.4 deaths per 100,000 workers.

By primary industry, workers in transportation and warehousing accounted for a third of all deaths and had the highest rates across all age groups.

Events leading to highway transportation deaths were similar across all age groups, with collisions between vehicles accounting for the largest proportion of deaths in each age group.

Among workers older than 65, the type of vehicle most often involved was an automobile, at 23%, semi-tractor trailer truck, at 22%, or pickup truck, at 15%, and a greater proportion of deaths involving off-road and industrial vehicles at 9%, compared with 2% for the other age groups.

Higher proportions of deaths involving semi-tractor trailer trucks were observed for workers aged 18–54 years and 55–64 years, at 31% and 37%, respectively.


  1. 1. Dale Jason [ August 29, 2013 @ 04:48AM ]

    If my arithmetic is correct, that translates to 73.1% attributable to workers under the age of 55, no? This is a grossly misleading article designed for someone's age group specific discriminatory agenda. Be careful treading there, that's all I have to say...for now.

  2. 2. BarbRRB [ August 29, 2013 @ 05:15AM ]

    WOW!!! Discriminating on a protected class. You are no longer discriminating against "truck drivers" in general anymore. Be careful is correct!

  3. 3. Mike Meyer [ August 29, 2013 @ 05:45AM ]

    And what percentage of drivers fall into each category ? There are more older drivers so the percentage would be higher.

  4. 4. Cliff Downing [ August 29, 2013 @ 06:51AM ]

    And it is also noted in the study, that deaths of older folks in semi tractor trailers was less, on a percentage basis, than those of younger groups. I did say percentage basis, so don't confuse that with actual numbers. The younger groups had death rate percentages greater in heavy commercial vehicles. The older is more apt to die thrust of this article took into account all sizes of trucks from class 1 to class 8. The older folks had a higher percentage in the smaller class vehicles. But for Class 8, they were far and away less likely to die than younger drivers. The final sentence of the article bears this out.

  5. 5. Jeff Peterson [ August 29, 2013 @ 11:21AM ]

    This was a needless article. The title leads one to think that Older Truckers were the cause of higher deaths ... after reading the article I find it was a waste of ink and bordering on age discrimination . And the response from Cliff Downing ... right on the mark. It troubles me that to get a read editors headline a misleading title.

  6. 6. Ronnie Hughes [ August 29, 2013 @ 11:31PM ]

    cdc ,what the hell,this was a needless,Big Gov. is the problem.

  7. 7. G. V. FOREMAN [ August 30, 2013 @ 07:17AM ]

    First, what is the CDC doing examining highway death stats? Isn't that already being done by the FMCSA? The old adage "to many cooks in the kitchen spoils the food". To many government agencies studying the same statistics-well, at at least we hope the stats are the same-simply complicates and convolutes(sic) the subject matter. Second, the greatest liars in the world are statistics and statisticians--and that's a fact!


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