A person’s occupation may dictate many aspects of his or her life. According to a study published in Accident Analysis & Prevention, the likelihood of dying in a motor vehicle accident might be one of them. Several industries were highlighted as having a disproportionately high risk of deadly car accidents among workers. Unsurprisingly, the transportation industry suffered a very high rate of fatality among workers. The top three industries were rounded out by warehousing and oil and gas workers.
Demographics are certainly part of the explanation for why certain industries see a larger percentage of workers involved in fatal accidents. Industries where workers tend to be young males who work long hours and drive pickup trucks are bound to suffer from higher death rates than those with older workers and a higher percentage of female employees. Rural areas also suffer from a higher percentage of fatal accidents than urban areas.
Long work hours and shifts that require a person to deviate from traditional sleeping patterns can put workers at serious risk of driver fatigue. Other factors that can contribute to deadly car accident rates are the prevalence of seat belt use and the availability of safety programs in a workplace where driving is one of the duties of workers. Smaller offices where no worker was solely responsible for safety and training were more likely to suffer a driving fatality than larger workplaces.
Employers would be wise to instruct workers on proper safety practices. Seat belt use should be emphasized as the dangers of tired driving explained. These steps could help reduce the number of deaths from car accidents suffered in any industry.
Source: Fuel Fix, “Oilfield workers at higher risk of fatal motor vehicle accidents,” by Jeannie Kever, 18 January 2013