Figure second lowest in state history
Twenty-eight people covered by the Oregon workers’ compensation system died on the job during 2011, according to the Department of Consumer and Business Services (DCBS). It’s the second lowest number of deaths reported since the state started tracking workplace deaths in 1943.
The total is an increase from 2010’s all-time low of 17 deaths. That figure was likely tied, in part, to the economic downturn. In 2009, 31 people died on the job and in 2008 there were 45 deaths.
On-the-job injuries have been on the decline in recent decades. In the 1990s, there was an average of 55 workplace deaths per year. In the 1980s, the average was 81 deaths. The statewide rate of reported workplace injuries and illnesses has also decreased more than 50 percent since the late 1980s.
“The loss of any worker on the job is a tragedy,” said Patrick Allen, DCBS director. “While this year’s increase in worker deaths is modest, and still at historically low levels, we need to redouble our efforts to ensure safe workplaces for all Oregonians.”For the complete article see the 05-16-2012 issue.
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