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North Carolina's most dangerous occupations

When it comes to workplace injuries, some occupations in North Carolina are much more hazardous than others. If you work in one of these high-risk jobs, you should be aware of the potential for injury so you can take extra precautions to keep yourself safe.

Here are the jobs with the most frequent rates of workplace injury in North Carolina. The state's Industrial Commission offers protection to workers through the state workers' compensation benefits program.

Incidence of workplace injuries

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2016, private industry employers reported over 71,000 non-fatal workplace injuries in North Carolina. That statistic averages out to an incidence rate of 2.5 cases per 100 full-time workers, which is actually lower than the national average of 2.9. While that is an encouraging statistic for the safety of the state's workers, the fact remains that some occupations still have a disproportionately higher chance for injury than others.

High-risk occupations

The BLS makes a salient point about how to define the term "dangerous job." For example, some occupations are naturally more hazardous than others simply because they are so rare and unique, such as an elephant trainer. In the more general population, however, there are certain categories of jobs that have higher injury rates.

The construction industry is a notoriously dangerous job sector. Construction workers suffer from a variety of fatal and non-fatal injuries resulting from falls from scaffolding or ladders, power tools, and falling objects. In fact, the BLS said the private construction sector had the highest number of fatal injuries in North Carolina, followed by the private transportation and warehousing industry sector. Common injuries in that sector include trucking accidents.

The BLS notes the importance of taking several factors into consideration when evaluating the hazards involved in a particular occupation. These factors include analyzing the number of deaths and fatal injuries along with safety precautions, the potential for a non-fatal injury, and the particular demands on a physical and mental level a particular job presents.

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