Workplace injuries, illnesses declined in 2010

October 31, 2011

The U.S. Dept. of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics has announced that nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses among private-sector industry employers declined in 2010 to 3.1 million, down from 3.3 million reported in 2009.

"We are encouraged by the reported decline in incidence rates for workplace injuries and illnesses, which is reflective of the joint effort of government, business, unions, and other organizations. Nevertheless, 3.1 million injuries and illnesses in the workplace are too high," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Serious injuries and illnesses can knock a working family out of the middle class. Workers should not have to sacrifice their health and safety to earn a paycheck.

"A report like this also highlights the importance of accurate recordkeeping. Employers must know what injuries and illnesses are occurring in their workplaces in order to identify and correct systemic issues that put their workers at risk," Solis continued. "We are concerned with poor record-keeping practices and programs that discourage workers from reporting injuries and illnesses. That's why OSHA is working hard to ensure the completeness and accuracy of these data, which are compiled by the nation's employers.

"As our economy continues to rebound and grow, we must ensure that safety and health are a part of that growth. Let's all remember that no job is a good job unless it is also a safe job."