Most Dangerous Jobs in Massachusetts
Most jobs aren’t that dangerous. However, there are certain jobs in Massachusetts that require workers to face numerous hazards and life-threatening risks.
According to the state’s Fatality Update, two hundred and twenty Massachusetts workers died from work injuries from 2016 to 2017. The report gives an overview of fatal injuries at work that took place in the state during that time period. It includes information collected by the Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation and Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries.
The workers’ compensation attorneys at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman in Boston are experts in handling work injury claims and obtaining maximum compensation for injured workers. We provide free and confidential consultations, which means there are no costs to you until we win your case.
Even if your job is dangerous, that doesn’t mean that you aren’t entitled to full and fair compensation for your work injuries.Most Dangerous Jobs in Massachusetts Are in Construction, Fishing, and Agriculture
Here’s a look at some of the most dangerous jobs in Massachusetts:
Construction – This is an industry fraught with on-the-job hazards. Most construction workers are required to work with and around heavy machinery and with dangerous power tools. Construction workers often work from scaffolding or ladders many feet above the ground and are at risk of fall injuries. They can be injured while driving vehicles as they perform their job duties. Common construction worker injuries include broken bones, electrocution, burns, amputation, brain injuries, and paralysis. Personal protective gear such as hardhats and goggles can help guard against injuries.
In Massachusetts, construction workers are six times more likely to die from overdoses of opioids than all other occupations in the state, according to a 2018 report by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. The high rates of bodily injuries sustained by construction workers often lead to opioid prescriptions and eventual opioid dependency. The department reported more than 1,000 opioid-related deaths among construction workers and extraction workers for the four years from 2011 to 2015.
Agriculture – Agricultural workers are at risk of injury from hazardous chemicals such as pesticides and fertilizers, dangerous farm equipment, and diseases that can spread from contact with cows and other farm animals. Exposure to dust and molds can cause respiratory problems and other illnesses. Grain bins and silos present suffocation hazards. Agricultural workers who pick crops often sustain repetitive stress injuries.
Transportation – Truck drivers and drivers who deliver goods place themselves at risk every time they get behind the wheel. Motor vehicle accidents can cause serious injury or wrongful death. Drivers are at risk of sustaining injuries linked to unloading cargo, such as overexertion injuries, falling injuries, and injuries caused by falling cargo. Drivers often suffer sprains and strains, broken bones, back and spine injuries, and head injuries, to name a few. Safe loading and unloading procedures can help reduce work-related injuries. Drivers who transport hazardous materials face additional job-related hazards.
Nationwide, workers in the trucking industry had the most fatalities compared to all other jobs, contributing to 11% of all worker deaths in 2017, according to the CDC. More than 75% of these deadly accidents involved transportation incidents, the agency said.
Installation, maintenance, and repair – Workers performing these types of jobs are exposed to numerous risks from hazardous substances and dangerous tools and equipment. Working in tight or cramped areas can cause sprains, strains, and other musculoskeletal injuries. Exposure to toxic substances can result in brain injuries, neurological injuries, and even death. Other common injuries include burns, electrocution, and lacerations.
Installation, maintenance and repair workers are at risk of asbestos-related injuries. Asbestos is a mineral that causes a fatal lung disease known as mesothelioma, and other illnesses. These workers often work with or around asbestos-containing products. For example, many old boilers, gaskets, and valves are known to contain asbestos. Asbestos can be found in ceilings, floors and certain spray coatings, including fireproofing sprays. Take-home asbestos exposure occurs when a family member exposed to asbestos brings home asbestos particles on work clothes and infects household members.
Manufacturing and production – Workers who work in the manufacturing industry often sustain injuries caused by the machines and tools that they use to perform their jobs. Injuries can occur when workers come into contact with equipment, are exposed to harmful substances or slip and fall in the work area. When machine guards and other safety features are removed from equipment to increase production, workers are more likely to sustain serious injuries.
Manufacturing companies have a duty to provide workers with a safe workplace. That includes providing safe manufacturing equipment that has been properly serviced and maintained and adequate training.
Workers in this field often suffer repetitive stress injuries, hearing loss, electrocution, broken bones, crushing injuries, and amputation.
When manufacturing equipment is defective and causes an injury, a worker can file a product liability suit against the companies that designed, manufactured, and sold the equipment. Machines and other equipment that lack warnings and contain inadequate or faulty instructions are considered to be defective.
Nursing – Nurses and nursing home workers frequently sustain injuries while working with patients. Moving and lifting patients puts tremendous stress on a nurse’s body. Common lifting injuries include muscle sprains and strains, back and spine injuries, shoulder injuries, knee injuries, and chronic pain. Using assistive devices, such as patient lifts and slings to lift and move patients, can prevent these injuries from happening.
Nurses and nursing home workers are at risk of being exposed to infectious diseases, including coronaviruses such as COVID-19. Nursing homes and other long-term care facilities in Massachusetts have been especially hard hit by the virus. These facilities accounted for almost 60% of all deaths related to COVID-19 in the state, according to reports issued in May 2020.
Hospitals, nursing homes, and other medical facilities are often understaffed. Overworked and fatigued nurses and other healthcare workers are more likely to be injured while performing their job duties.
As many of one-fifth of nurses who leave positions involving direct patient care do so because of on-the-job risks, according to a report by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
To learn more about how our dangerous job attorneys can help you with your work injury claim, contact The Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC today at (617) 367-2900 or using our online form.