Job related deaths down across Virginia

There was a 15 percent decrease in on the job fatalities in the commonwealth during 2013, according to a report released by C. Ray Davenport, commissioner of Labor and Industry for Virginia.

The Virginia Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries report’s preliminary figures for 2013 were released last month, with the estimates of 126 occupational fatalities throughout the state down 23 from 2012. The deaths were categorized according to manner of death, industry, gender and age.

“Virginia has had a welcome reduction in work-related fatalities in 2013, however we must continue to urge employers and workers to exercise caution and safe practices in the workplace,” Davenport stated in a news release.

In terms of manner of death, 54 accidents were transportation related, with 41 involving a motorized land vehicle. Falls, slips and trips accounted for 21 deaths while 27 deaths were a result of work place violence, including 12 homicides and 10 suicides. Exposure to harmful substances totaled at six incidents, three of which involved drugs or alcohol. Sixteen people died as a result of being struck by or caught in a piece of equipment.

Private industry accounted for 110 deaths in 2013, with the remaining 16 accounted for in the government sector. Construction had the highest amount of fatalities at 27 deaths, followed by transportation and warehousing at 17 deaths, then by agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting at 15 deaths.

Ninety-six percent of deaths were men, with 56 percent ages 25-54. In terms of occupation, 19 were truck drivers, nine were farmers and ranchers and 12 were either construction supervisors or laborers.

According to the report, from 1992 to 2013, 2005 was the year with the highest fatalities, totaling at 186 and 2010 was the lowest year, at 107 deaths.