Inspired by the labor shortages in the transport and construction industries, we began this project to assess if the relationship between compensation and the danger of the jobs within those fields could potentially be affecting the size of the recruitment pool. By taking into account the fatality rate (a rate calculated by the BLS by considering the number of fatal injuries and the number of hours worked) rather than just total fatalities, we can gauge which truly are the riskiest and deadliest jobs in America. Furthermore, we took a look at how much the individuals within those professions are compensated for the level of danger they are subjected to. Are the most dangerous jobs also those with the highest compensation? We suspected this was not the case.
What Is the Most Dangerous Job in America?
The most dangerous job in the U.S. right now is logging work. Logging workers have a fatality rate of 135.9, which is nearly 50 points higher than the closest second — truly staggering. About 91 loggers died in 2016, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and considering that the job only pays $40,830 as an annual mean wage, the job hardly seems worth it. It seems like they call loose branches “widowmakers” for a reason!
What Are the Top 10 Most Dangerous Jobs in America)?
Here’s our list of the 10 most dangerous jobs in the U.S.:
- Logging Workers — 135.9 fatality rate (91 total fatalities)
- Fishers and Related Fishing Workers — 86.0 fatality rate (24 total fatalities)
- Aircraft Pilots and Flight Engineers — 55.0 fatality rate (75 total fatalities)
- Roofers — 48.6 fatality rate (101 total fatalities)
- Refuse and Recyclable Material Collectors — 34.1 fatality rate (31 total fatalities)
- Structural Iron and Steel Workers — 25.1 fatality rate (16 total fatalities)
- Delivery Truck Drivers and Driver/Sales Workers — 24.7 fatality rate (918 total fatalities)
- Farmers, Ranchers, and Other Agricultural Managers — 23.1 fatality rate (260 total fatalities)
- First-Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers — 18.0 fatality rate (134 total fatalities)
- Grounds Maintenance Workers — 17.4 fatality rate (217 total fatalities)
Which of Those on Our List of the Most Dangerous Jobs Actually Pay Well?
It’s somewhat upsetting that some of the most stressful, hazardous, and riskiest jobs in America don’t have particularly high mean salaries at all. Most of these dangerous jobs, in fact, make less than the median household income in America (which is $61,372). Dangerous jobs that pay well include aircraft pilots and flight engineers, who make an average of $138,690 per year. Also, farm managers and agricultural managers make an average of $80,320 per year, but the range between high earners and low earners can be very high.
Making Transportation and Construction Safer
In 2016, 570 individuals have died in the trucking industry, and 991 died in the construction industry. They might have fairly low fatality rates, but every individual death is one too many. Make your operation safer and more effective using our solutions.