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Sunday, January 2, 2005

Dangerous Professions

A total of 154 law enforcement officers were killed in the line-of-duty in 2004 according to the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund. Law enforcement is certainly a dangerous profession but not the most dangerous.

The most dangerous profession in the United States in 2003 was logging according to the most recent figures from The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls).

A total of 104 loggers were killed out of a total of 79,000 workers in 2003. This is a fatality rate of 131.6 per 100,000 workers.

• Facts from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Employment in 2003: 138,928,000 workers
Total number of work fatalities in 2003: 5,559

The three most frequent work-related fatal events in 2003:
Highway accidents: 1,350 fatalities
Falls: 691
Homicides: 631

other categories of fatal events:
struck by falling object: 322 fatalities
electrocutions: 246
self-inflicted injuries: 218
fires and explosions: 198
drowning: 52

• Occupation.............................fatalities....rate per 100,000

1. Logging workers...........................104.............131.6
2. fishers and related fishing occupations...under 49........115.0
3. Aircraft pilots and flight engineers......113..............97.4
4. Farmers and ranchers......................329..............39.3
5. Miners....................................141..............26.9
6. Driver/sales workers and truck drivers....861..............26.7
7. Construction laborers.....................289..............25.1
8. Police and sheriff’s patrol officers......128..............20.9
9. Miscellaneous agricultural workers........131..............16.5
10. Grounds maintenance workers...............156..............13.6

Rate of fatal work injury per 100,000 workers, national average: 4.0

Note: There is some confusion. The FBI reported the number of police officer fatalities as 132 in 2003. There is no obvious reason for the difference of four fatalities from the figure of 128 reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In addition, just to confuse things a little more the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund reported that 148 (142 male and six female) law enforcement officers died in the line of duty in 2003. Also, MSNBC reported the number of police officers killed in 2003 as 145.

Bureau of Labor Statistics:
NATIONAL CENSUS OF FATAL OCCUPATIONAL INJURIES IN 2003
Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries-2003 Data
Fatal occupational injuries by occupation and selected event or exposure, 2003

related links:
154 police officers killed in line of duty in 2004 [MSNBC]
National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund [nleomf.com]
OFFICERS LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER FATALITIES REACH 148 FOR 2003 [nleomf.com]
Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted in 2003 [fbi.gov]
Occupations more dangerous than being a police officer [bls: 2000 fatality statistics]
How Many Police Officers Killed in the line of duty in 2003? [TJN]
Law Officers Killed and Assaulted in 2003 [TJN]
15 Deaths a Day is Good News in Chinese Coal Mines [TJN]

Other Lists of Dangerous Jobs:
Top 10 Most Dangerous Jobs [askman.com]
Dangerous Jobs [Fielding's]
America's most dangerous jobs [CNN, Oct. 13, 2003]

update Jan. 14, 2005: Accoriding to Churchill Insurance in Britain the ten most dangerous jobs in that country are:

1. Window Cleaner
2. Soldier
3. Fireman
4. Offshore fisherman
5. Pilot
7. Roofer
8. Scaffolder
9. Tree surgeon
10. Circus performer

Britain's most dangerous job [msn.co.uk]

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