Workplace injuries have many causes. The Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index contains an annual report citing the 10 causes of the most serious work injuries. Its 2019 list of the causes of workplace accidents and injuries spans many occupations.
These injuries caused a worker to miss at least five workdays. Injuries were ranked by their direct cost to employers consisting of payment of medical costs and lost wages. This report is based on non-fatal injury data from 2016.
Overexertion involving outside sources was the lead cause of injuries and cost $13.11 billion and constituted 23.65 percent of injuries. This was followed by falling on the same level which cost $10.38 billion and made up 18.72 percent of injuries and being struck by an object or equipment which cost $5.22 billion and comprised 9.42 percent of injuries.
Other causes were falls to lower level, exertions or bodily reactions, roadway accidents involving a vehicle, being caught in or compressed by objects or equipment, repetitive motions from microtasks and being struck against an object or equipment.
The ten top injuries cost $46.93 billion and were 84.66 percent of injuries. The cost of the most disabling injuries was $55.43 billion.
The 2019 listing is the first one to report on the costs and causes of the most serious injuries for eight industries that have a high proportion of all injuries. These industries are manufacturing, health, construction, professional services, retail, wholesale, transportation and warehousing and leisure and hospitality.
Falls to lower level was the most cited injury in construction. Falls to the same level was cited for professional services while overexertion attributed to outside sources was the top cause for manufacturing.
Injured workers may face medical expenses and lost wages. An attorney can help seek compensation through workers’ compensation or a civil lawsuit.