December 6, 2017

California Work-related Injury and Illness Rate Lowest in 13 Years

Sacramento, CA – The Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) has posted California’s 2014 occupational injury and illness data with detailed information on employer-reported injuries involving days away from work. The data shows that the incidence of occupational injuries remains at its lowest level in 13 years.

“As a whole, the lower work-related injury and illness rates reflect California’s commitment to on-the-job health and safety,” said DIR Director Christine Baker. “However, employers in industry sectors that have a disproportionate share of work-related injuries must focus on prevention to further protect the health and safety of employees.”

The Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) data reflect a total of 460,000 reportable injury and illness cases in 2014, of which 265,000 cases involve lost work-time, job transfer, or restriction-from-duty cases (referred to as lost work-time cases), with over 140,000 of those cases involving days away from work. The incidence of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses in California remain at their lowest level in the past decade in all three categories.

CA Nonfatal Injuries 2014

Key findings of the 2014 SOII in California:

  • For cases involving days away from work, Latino workers continue to experience the highest incidence of occupational injuries, comprising 59 percent of all reported days away from work cases. In construction, manufacturing, mining and natural resources, 3 out of 4 workers injured on the job and losing work days are Latino. CA Race Origin Work Injuries 2014
  • In private industry, new hires and young workers have higher rates of injury:
    • One of every four workers whose injury or illness at work involved days away from work in private industry had been on the job less than a year.
    • Teenagers from 16 to 19 years of age suffered the highest incidence of days away from work compared to all other age groups.
  • Sprains, strains and tears are the largest injury category involving days away from work. Among private sector workers, the greatest number of injuries or illnesses requiring days away from work were caused by overexertion and bodily reaction, by contact with an object or piece of equipment, and by falls, trips and slips.

“These statistics on California occupational injuries and illnesses provide us with valuable information to protect workers, and help us refine and strengthen workplace safety and health regulations, training materials, and outreach and education efforts for employers and workers,” said Cal/OSHA Chief Juliann Sum. Cal/OSHA is a division in DIR.

Tables and charts reflecting nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses data for 2014 (and prior years’ data) for California are posted online.

Estimates for the California Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses are derived from a statistical sample of 16,000 employers in the state. The SOII program is administered by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in cooperation with participating state agencies. Under the OSHA Recordkeeping regulation (29 CFR 1904), covered employers are required to prepare and maintain records of serious occupational injuries and illnesses, using the OSHA 300 Log.

Additional background and methodological information regarding the BLS occupational safety and health statistics program can be found in Chapter 9 of the BLS Handbook of Methods (PDF). Employment data are 2014 annual averages from the BLS Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program.

Source: CA DIR

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