Fatal work injuries related to transportation work increased in 2020, 2021, and 2022 but remained lower than in 2019.   -  Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Fatal work injuries related to transportation work increased in 2020, 2021, and 2022 but remained lower than in 2019. 

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

There were more transportation and material moving worker deaths in 2022 than in any other occupational group, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' recent release of the National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2022. Those occupations had the highest rate of fatalities, as well.

The report attributes the increase to fatalities of driver/sales workers and truck drivers increasing by 8%, from 1,032 fatalities in 2021 to 1,115 in 2022.

Workers in transportation and material moving occupations experienced 1,620 fatal work injuries in 2022. The next occupational group with the highest number of fatal incidents was construction and extraction workers with 1,056 incidents.

Transportation and material moving workers also had the highest rate of fatalities, 14.6 fatalities per 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers. Farming, fishing, and forestry occupations had a higher fatality rate, 23.5 per 100,000 FTE, but fewer fatal incidents overall.

Transportation Incidents

Transportation incidents remained the most frequent type of fatal event accounting for 37.7% of all occupational fatalities. There were 2,066 fatal injuries from transportation incidents in 2022, a 4.2% increase from 1,982 in 2021.

Roadway Incidents

Roadway incidents involving a vehicle accounted for the largest portion of fatal transportation incidents, according to the report. Those incidents increased 9.3% between 2021 and 2022, leading to a series high of 1,369.

Leading roadway incidents included:

  • Roadway collision with an object other than a vehicle — 352
  • Roadway collision with vehicle moving in opposite directions, oncoming — 252
  • Roadway non-collision incident — 249
  • Roadway collision with vehicle moving in the same direction — 207
  • Roadway collision with vehicle moving perpendicularly — 164

Transportation and material moving, as an occupation, had the second highest rate of fatal work injuries in 2022 and the largest number of fatal injury incidents.  -  Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Transportation and material moving, as an occupation, had the second highest rate of fatal work injuries in 2022 and the largest number of fatal injury incidents.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Non-Roadway Incidents

Other transportation incident counts, not occurring on a roadway, included:

  • Aircraft incidents — 101
  • Rail vehicle incidents — 43
  • Water vehicle incident — 31
  • Non-roadway incident involving motorized land vehicle — 185
  • Non-roadway non-collision incident — 128
  • Jack-knifed or overturned, non-roadway — 77

Demographics Most Impacted

Transportation incidents were the highest cause of fatalities among African American workers, 278, and Hispanic workers, 439.

Workers in the 55- to 64-year-old age group continued to have the highest number of fatalities in 2022 with 1,175, which was 21.4% of total fatalities. Transportation incidents were the highest cause of fatalities for this age group (455), followed by falls, slips, and trips (251).

Despite consecutive increases in 2021 and 2022, transportation incidents were still down 2.6% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019 when there were 2,122 fatalities.

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