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15-104-PHI
January 23, 2015

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Workplace Fatalities in the Philadelphia Area – 2013

Fatal work injuries totaled 62 in 2013 for the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md. Metropolitan Statistical Area, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that while the 2013 count was preliminary, the number of work-related fatalities in the Philadelphia metropolitan area decreased by 15 over the year. Fatal occupational injuries in the metropolitan area have ranged from a high of 93 in 2004 and 2007 to this year’s low. (See chart 1.)

Nationwide, a preliminary total of 4,405 fatal work injuries were recorded in 2013, lower than the revised count of 4,628 fatal work injuries in 2012, according to the results from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) program. Final 2013 data from CFOI will be released in the late spring of 2015.

 Chart 1. Total fatal occupational injuries, Philadelphia area, 2004-2013

 

In 2013, the Philadelphia area had the sixth-largest population nationally1 and placed eighth in the number of work-related fatalities among the 10 largest metropolitan statistical areas in the United States. (See chart 2.) The most populated area in the country—New York—had the highest number of workplace fatalities (152) in 2013. The smallest of the 10 metropolitan areas—Boston—had the second-lowest fatality count with 42 deaths. (See chart 4.)

 Chart 2. Total fatal occupational injuries in the 10 largest metropolitan areas, 2013

 

Of the 62 fatal work injuries reported in the Philadelphia metropolitan area in 2013, 19 resulted from transportation incidents; 8 of these were roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicles and 7 were pedestrian vehicular incidents. (See table 2.) Transportation incidents was the most frequent fatal event in 8 of the 10 largest metropolitan areas in 2013, including Philadelphia. (See table 1.) The Philadelphia area had the fifth-highest share of work-related deaths from transportation incidents (31 percent), led by Miami (40 percent), Chicago (33 percent), New York (32 percent), and Atlanta (31 percent). (Note that transportation counts presented in this release are expected to rise when updated 2013 data are released in the late spring of 2015 because key source documentation detailing specific transportation-related incidents has not yet been received.)

Violence and other injuries by persons or animals was the second-most frequent cause of workplace deaths in the Philadelphia metropolitan area, responsible for 26 percent of total fatalities. Nine of the 16 fatalities in this category were homicides. Three areas had higher shares of workplace fatalities due to violence and other injuries by persons or animals: Washington D.C. (41 percent), Boston (36 percent), and Atlanta (28 percent).

Falls, slips, or trips was the third-most frequent fatal event in Philadelphia in 2013, resulting in 21 percent of all workplace fatalities. Eleven of these 13 fatalities were a result of falls to a lower level. Philadelphia’s share of total fatalities due to falls, slips, or trips ranked fifth highest of the ten largest metropolitan areas.

In the United States, transportation incidents was also the most frequent fatal workplace event in 2013, accounting for 40 percent of fatal work injuries, higher than Philadelphia’s 31-percent share. (See chart 3.) As in Philadelphia, violence and other injuries by persons or animals was the second-most frequent type of event nationally, with 17 percent of work-related fatalities, lower than the share in Philadelphia. Contact with objects and equipment and falls, slips, or trips each accounted for 16 percent of the nation’s workplace fatalities. In Philadelphia, contact with objects and equipment accounted for 11 percent of work-related fatalities.

 Chart 3. Fatal occupational injuries by selected event, Philadelphia area and the United States, 2013

Additional key characteristics in the Philadelphia area:

  • The retail trade industry sector had the largest number of fatalities in the Philadelphia area in 2013 with 12, up from 6 the previous year. (See table 3.) Five of the worker deaths were due to violence and other injuries by persons or animals, three were due to transportation incidents, and one was due to fires and explosions.
  • The construction industry sector had the second-highest fatality count with 11, down from the 15 reported in 2012. Transportation incidents accounted for four worker deaths in construction, while falls, slips, or trips and exposure to harmful substances or environments each accounted for three fatalities in this sector.
  • Transportation and material moving occupations had the highest number of fatal work injuries with 18, followed by construction and extraction occupations with 13. (See table 4.)
  • Men accounted for 95 percent of the work-related fatalities in the metropolitan area. (See table 5.) Transportation incidents made up 32 percent of these fatalities. Nationally, men accounted for 93 percent of all fatalities.
  • In Philadelphia, 68 percent of those who died from a workplace injury were white non-Hispanics, the same as the national share. Black or African-American non-hispanics accounted for 16 percent of worker fatalities in Philadelphia, compared to 9 percent nationwide.
  • Workers 25-54 years old—the prime working age group—accounted for 71 percent of the area’s work-related fatalities in 2013. Nationally, workers in this group accounted for 60 percent of on-the-job fatalities.
  • Of the 62 people that had fatal work injuries in Philadelphia, 84 percent worked for wages and salaries; the remaining were self-employed. The most frequent fatal event for wage and salary workers was transportation incidents, while violence and other injuries by persons or animals caused the most worker fatalities for the self-employed.
  • Thirty-five percent (22) of work-related fatalities occurred after 8:00 a.m. and before 12:00 p.m. in Philadelphia in 2013.The hour with the most fatalities (eight) was 10:00 a.m. to 10:59 a.m.
  • Thirteen workplace fatalities occurred on Monday in Philadelphia in 2013; Thursday followed with 11 fatalities and Friday with 10.
  • In 2011, CFOI began identifying if a fatally-injured worker was working as a contractor and recording the industry of both the worker and the contracting firm. A contractor is defined as a worker employed by one firm but working at the behest of another firm that exercises overall responsibility for the operations at the site of the fatal injury. In 2013, the Philadelphia area had 15 fatally-injured workers identified as fitting the contractor criteria; 5 of these deaths occurred at government operations.

1 Metropolitan area populations based on 2011 estimates from the Census Bureau: http://www.census.gov/popest/data/metro/totals/2011/tables/CBSA-EST2011-05.xls

 

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.


Technical Note

Background of the program. The Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI), part of the BLS Occupational Safety and Health Statistics (OSHS) program, compiles a count of all fatal work injuries occurring in the U.S. during the calendar year. The CFOI program uses diverse state, federal, and independent data sources to identify, verify, and describe fatal work injuries. This assures counts are as complete and accurate as possible.

For technical information and definitions for the CFOI program, please go to the BLS Handbook of Methods on the BLS web site at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/pdf/homch9.pdf.

Federal/State agency coverage. The Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries includes data for all fatal work injuries, whether the decedent was working in a job covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or other federal or state agencies or was outside the scope of regulatory coverage. Thus, any comparison between the BLS fatality census counts and those released by other agencies should take into account the different coverage requirements and definitions being used by each agency.

Acknowledgments. BLS thanks the Pennsylvania Department of Health; New Jersey Department of Health; Delaware Department of Labor; and Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation for their efforts in collecting accurate, comprehensive, and useful data on fatal work injuries. BLS also appreciates the efforts of all federal, state, local, and private sector entities that submitted source documents used to identify fatal work injuries. Among these agencies are the Occupational Safety and Health Administration; the National Transportation Safety Board; the U.S. Coast Guard; the Mine Safety and Health Administration; the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (Federal Employees' Compensation and Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation divisions); the Federal Railroad Administration; the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; state vital statistics registrars, coroners, and medical examiners; state departments of health, labor and industries, and workers' compensation agencies; state and local police departments; and state farm bureaus.

Area definitions. The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, dated December 2009. A detailed list of the geographic definitions is available at http://www.bls.gov/lau/lausmsa.htm.

The Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) consists of the Camden, N.J. Metropolitan Division (MD); the Philadelphia, Pa. Metropolitan Division (MD); and the Wilmington, Del.-Md.-N.J. Metropolitan Division (MD).

  • The Camden, N.J. MD is composed of Burlington, Camden, and Gloucester Counties in New Jersey.
  • The Philadelphia, Pa. MD consists of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties in Pennsylvania.
  • The Wilmington, Del.-Md.-N.J. MD consists of New Castle County in Delaware, Cecil County in Maryland, and Salem County in New Jersey.
Table 1. Fatal occupational injuries by selected event groups in the 10 largest metropolitan areas in 2013
Metropolitan Areas(1) Total fatalities(2) Transportation incidents Violence and other injuries by persons or animals Falls, slips, trips Contact with objects and equipment Exposure to harmful substances or environments

United States(3)

4,405 1,740 753 699 717 330

New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa.

152 49 38 31 18 13

Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, Calif.

102 28 22 24 15 12

Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, Ill.-Ind.-Wis.

95 31 23 11 19 6

Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, Texas

86 24 22 9 16 9

Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, D.C.-Va.-Md.-W.Va.

83 15 34 15 13 4

Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, Fla.

78 31 16 18 6 5

Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas

72 19 15 16 12 6

Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md.

62 19 16 13 7 5

Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, Mass.-N.H.

42 9 15 9 6 2

Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Ga.

29 9 8 4 8 -

Footnotes:
(1) Metropolitan areas used in this table are Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) based on definitions from the Office of Management and Budget Bulletin Number 10-02, December 2009.
(2) Data are based on a preliminary total of 4,405 fatal work injuries for 2013.
(3) Also includes fatalities occurring in nonmetropolitan areas.
 

Note: Data for 2013 are preliminary. Revised and final 2013 data are scheduled to be released in spring 2015. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.
 

Table 2. Fatal occupational injuries by event or exposure, Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD, 2012-2013
Event or exposure(1) 2012(2) 2013(p)
Number Number Percent

Total

77 62 100

Violence and other injuries by persons or animals

16 16 26

Intentional injury by person

15 16 26

Homicides

13 9 15

Shooting by other person--intentional

11 7 11

Stabbing, cutting, slashing, piercing

2 1 2

Hitting, kicking, beating, shoving

- 1 2

Suicides

- 7 11

Hanging, strangulation, asphyxiation--intentional self-harm

- 3 5

Transportation incidents

25 19 31

Pedestrian vehicular incident

6 7 11

Pedestrian struck by vehicle in work zone

- 4 6

Pedestrian struck by forward-moving vehicle in work zone

- 2 3

Pedestrian struck by vehicle backing up in work zone

- 2 3

Pedestrian struck by vehicle in roadway

- 1 2

Pedestrian struck by forward-moving vehicle in roadway

- 1 2

Roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicle

13 8 13

Roadway collision with other vehicle

7 6 10

Roadway collision--moving perpendicularly

2 2 3

Roadway collision--moving and standing vehicle in roadway

- 2 3

Nonroadway incidents involving motorized land vehicle

4 3 5

Nonroadway collision with object other than vehicle

- 1 2

Fires and explosions

2 2 3

Fires

2 2 3

Collapsing building, structure, or structural element during fire

2 2 3

Falls, slips, trips

14 13 21

Falls to lower level

8 11 18

Fall from collapsing structure or equipment

- 2 3

Fall from collapsing structure or equipment 26 to 30 feet

- 1 2

Fall from collapsing structure or equipment more than 30 feet

- 1 2

Other fall to lower level

6 8 13

Other fall to lower level less than 6 feet

- 4 6

Other fall to lower level 11 to 15 feet

- 1 2

Other fall to lower level more than 30 feet

3 1 2

Exposure to harmful substances or environments

11 5 8

Exposure to electricity

7 3 5

Direct exposure to electricity

2 3 5

Contact with objects and equipment

9 7 11

Struck by object or equipment

6 4 6

Struck by powered vehicle--nontransport

- 1 2

Caught between rolling powered vehicle and other object

- 1 2

Struck by falling object or equipment--other than powered vehicle

2 - -

Struck by object falling from vehicle or machinery--other than vehicle part

1 1 2

Struck by discharged or flying object

- 1 2

Struck by dislodged flying object, particle

- 1 2

Struck, caught, or crushed in collapsing structure, equipment, or material

- 3 5

Excavation or trenching cave-in

- 1 2

Struck, caught, or crushed in other collapsing structure or equipment

- 2 3

Footnotes:
(1) Based on the BLS Occupational Injury and Illness Classification System (OIICS) 2.01 implemented for 2011 data forward.
(2) Data for 2012 are revised and final.
(p) Data for 2013 are preliminary. Revised and final 2013 data are scheduled to be released in spring 2015.
 

NOTE: Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. Percentages may not add to totals because of rounding. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatality counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.
 

Table 3. Fatal occupational injuries by selected* industry, Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD, 2012-2013
Industry(1) 2012(2) 2013(p)
Number Number Percent

Total

77 62 100

Private industry

66 57 92

Natural resources and mining

3 3 5

Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting

3 3 5

Crop production

2 3 5

Construction

15 11 18

Construction

15 11 18

Construction of buildings

1 1 2

Heavy and civil engineering construction

1 4 6

Specialty trade contractors

13 6 10

Manufacturing

4 4 6

Manufacturing

4 4 6

Fabricated metal product manufacturing

- 1 2

Computer and electronic product manufacturing

- 1 2

Trade, transportation, and utilities

19 23 37

Retail trade

6 12 19

Building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers

1 1 2

Food and beverage stores

4 2 3

Health and personal care stores

- 2 3

Gasoline stations

- 2 3

Nonstore retailers

- 2 3

Transportation and warehousing

10 9 15

Transit and ground passenger transportation

2 2 3

Support activities for transportation

- 1 2

Utilities

- 1 2

Utilities

- 1 2

Financial activities

4 3 5

Real estate and rental and leasing

3 3 5

Real estate

- 3 5

Professional and business services

5 6 10

Administrative and waste services

5 6 10

Administrative and support services

5 5 8

Educational and health services

3 3 5

Educational services

- 1 2

Educational services

- 1 2

Health care and social assistance

- 2 3

Ambulatory health care services

- 2 3

Leisure and hospitality

8 2 3

Arts, entertainment, and recreation

2 1 2

Performing arts, spectator sports, and related industries

2 1 2

Accommodation and food services

6 1 2

Accommodation

- 1 2

Government(3)

11 5 8

State government

1 1 2

Local government

9 4 6
* For full table detail, see www.bls.gov/ro3/cfoiphltables.htm#industry      

Footnotes:
(1) Industry data are based on the North American Industry Classification System, 2007. Total may include other industries not shown.
(2) Data for 2012 are revised and final.
(3) Includes fatal injuries to workers employed by governmental organizations regardless of industry.
(p) Data for 2013 are preliminary. Revised and final 2013 data are scheduled to be released in spring 2015.
 

NOTE: Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. Percentages may not add to totals because of rounding. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatality counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.
 

Table 4. Fatal occupational injuries by selected* occupation, Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD, 2012-2013
Occupation(1) 2012(2) 2013(p)
Number Number Percent

Total

77 62 100

Management occupations

3 4 6

Other management occupations

3 4 6

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers

1 3 5

Property, real estate, and community association managers

- 1 2

Architecture and engineering occupations

- 1 2

Engineers

- 1 2

Electrical and electronics engineers

- 1 2

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media occupations

- 1 2

Entertainers and performers, sports and related workers

- 1 2

Athletes, coaches, umpires, and related workers

- 1 2

Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations

- 1 2

Health diagnosing and treating practitioners

- 1 2

Physicians and surgeons

- 1 2

Protective service occupations

6 2 3

Supervisors of protective service workers

1 2 3

First-line supervisors of fire fighting and prevention workers

1 2 3

Food preparation and serving related occupations

3 1 2

Cooks

- 1 2

Food preparation workers

- 1 2

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations

6 4 6

Supervisors of building and grounds cleaning and maintenance workers

- 1 2

First-line supervisors of building and grounds cleaning and maintenance workers

- 1 2

Building cleaning and pest control workers

- 1 2

Pest control workers

- 1 2

Sales and related occupations

4 7 11

Supervisors of sales workers

2 4 6

First-line supervisors of sales workers

2 4 6

Retail sales workers

2 2 3

Cashiers

2 2 3

Other sales and related workers

- 1 2

Miscellaneous sales and related workers

- 1 2

Office and administrative support occupations

3 - -

Material recording, scheduling, dispatching, and distributing workers

- 1 2

Stock clerks and order fillers

- 1 2

Construction and extraction occupations

16 13 21

Supervisors of construction and extraction workers

3 4 6

First-line supervisors of construction trades and extraction workers

3 4 6

Construction trades workers

11 8 13

Construction laborers

- 1 2

Electricians

2 3 5

Roofers

- 3 5

Installation, maintenance, and repair occupations

7 5 8

Other installation, maintenance, and repair occupations

- 4 6

Line installers and repairers

- 1 2

Maintenance and repair workers, general

- 3 5

Production occupations

3 3 5

Supervisors of production workers

- 1 2

First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

- 1 2

Transportation and material moving occupations

18 18 29

Motor vehicle operators

12 9 15

Driver/sales workers and truck drivers

10 5 8

Taxi drivers and chauffeurs

2 3 5

Miscellaneous motor vehicle operators

- 1 2

Other transportation workers

- 1 2

Automotive and watercraft service attendants

- 1 2

Material moving workers

3 7 11

Industrial truck and tractor operators

- 3 5

Laborers and material movers, hand

- 3 5

Refuse and recyclable material collectors

- 1 2
* For full table detail, see www.bls.gov/ro3/cfoiphltables.htm#occupation      

Footnotes:
(1) Occupation data are based on the Standard Occupational Classification system, 2010. Total may include occupations not shown.
(2) Data for 2012 are revised and final.
(p) Data for 2013 are preliminary. Revised and final 2013 data are scheduled to be released in spring 2015.
 

NOTE: Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. Percentages may not add to totals because of rounding. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatality counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.
 

Table 5. Fatal occupational injuries by worker characteristics, Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD, 2012-2013
Worker characteristics 2012(1) 2013(p)
Number Number Percent

Total

77 62 100
Employee status      

Wage and salary workers(2)

67 52 84

Self-employed(3)

10 10 16
Gender      

Men

70 59 95

Women

7 3 5
Age(4)      

20 to 24 years

3 1 2

25 to 34 years

14 10 16

35 to 44 years

18 14 23

45 to 54 years

23 20 32

55 to 64 years

12 9 15

65 and over

7 8 13
Race or ethnic origin(5)      

White (non-Hispanic)

43 42 68

Black or African-American (non-Hispanic)

16 10 16

Hispanic or Latino

13 5 8

Asian (non-Hispanic)

5 5 8

Footnotes:
(1) Data for 2012 are revised and final.
(2) May include volunteers and workers receiving other types of compensation.
(3) Includes self-employed workers, owners of unincorporated businesses and farms, paid and unpaid family workers, and may include some owners of incorporated businesses or members of partnerships.
(4) Information may not be available for all age groups.
(5) Persons identified as Hispanic or Latino may be of any race. The race categories shown exclude Hispanic and Latino workers.
(p) Data for 2013 are preliminary. Revised and final 2013 data are scheduled to be released in spring 2015.
 

NOTE: Totals for major categories may include subcategories not shown separately. Percentages may not add to totals because of rounding. Dashes indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria. CFOI fatality counts exclude illness-related deaths unless precipitated by an injury event.
 

 Chart 4. Total workplace fatalities in the 10 largest metropolitan areas in the United States, 2013

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, January 23, 2015