Some jobs are more dangerous and have a higher risk of fatal injuries than others.
You may think that being a firefighter, police officer or construction worker is the most dangerous, but in Illinois at least, work that requires driving a small or large truck to deliver goods is number one.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 5,333 fatal work injuries in the United States in 2019, up almost 2% from the year before and the highest toll in a dozen years. Of those deaths, 158 were in Illinois, and one-third (53 to be exact) were due to transportation accidents.
Most Dangerous Jobs in USA
To find the most dangerous jobs in America, the Bureau of Labor Statistics annually identifies jobs with the highest fatal injury rate. In 2019, 34 job categories had a fatal injury rate above the national average for all workers of 3.5 per 100,000 full-time workers. Check out the complete list.
But back to truck driving, what can be done to mitigate so many accidents and fatalities? The trucking industry itself could play a role and encourage adequate training of driving techniques and a thorough knowledge of the rules of the road. It could also encourage trucking companies to set more realistic schedules and expectations for its drivers.
Dangers of Drowsy Driving
A study by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) suggests nearly 1 in 9 truck drivers involved in an accident reported fatigue and drowsy driving as the direct cause of the crash. An additional 40% of commercial truck drivers claimed fatigue and pressure from work as contributing factors.
For now, the real responsibility for safe driving lies in the hands of the drivers. By slowing down, they can avoid the safety risks inherent in speeding. Falling asleep at the wheel can be prevented by more frequent rest breaks. Sadly, drowsy driving kills.