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Police, firefighters face high risk of injury at work

All workers in California risk suffering an injury on-the-job. However, some professions have a higher risk of being injured at work than others. Who's most likely to be injured in a workplace accident in the United States?

Not that surprising, firemen, cops and public-safety officials have the highest risk of getting injured while working, according to the Labor Department. These positions have the highest injury rate in the country, and a new government report found that 10.4 out of 100 workers at fire departments, justice departments and city police officers reported nonfatal workplace injuries or illnesses last year.

The injury rate among these workers has slightly increased from 2011, which reported that 10.3 out of 100 workers suffered an injury in these professions. The report did not state what led to the increase but workers in these professions face many hazards so it is likely that cops, firefighters and other public safety officials will continue to see high injury rates on-the-job.

The construction industry also sees a high rate of injuries in the workplace. It appears that construction workers working for city governments are more likely to be injured compared to those working in the private construction industry. The Labor Department reported that the injury rate among construction workers working for city governments increased from 8.7 to 10.2 per 100 workers. 

The increase in injuries in the public sector of the construction industry could mean that safety regulations are not being followed or workers may not be receiving adequate training for working around certain hazards. This increases the risk of being injured at work and could be why certain construction workers are suffering more injuries. 

Regardless of the industry, employers are supposed to follow safety regulations to keep their workers safe. Many workplace accidents are preventable, and workers should be receiving proper training before working around hazardous equipment or chemicals that can lead to an injury. 

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Who Gets Injured Most on the Job?" Jonathan House, Nov. 7, 2013

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