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Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries 2019

The Illinois Department of Public Health, Division of Epidemiologic Studies, conducts the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) with partial support from the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This partnership has been in existence since 1993. The purpose of the Illinois CFOI is to monitor, verify, and record all instances of workplace fatalities. Upon receipt of fatality data, CFOI staff work to verify fatalities and collect additional information on fatality circumstances and demographics of the decedent. This report presents data collected through the Illinois CFOI program for calendar year 2019.

Methods

The Illinois CFOI obtains data elements from a variety of public and confidential source documents. These documents include, but are not limited to, coroner and medical examiner reports, death certificates, National Transportation Safety Board reports, news media articles and reports, Mine Safety and Health Administration reports, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports, police reports, and workers’ compensation reports.

For verification purposes, a minimum of two source documents are required for each fatality case. CFOI staffers match source documents with cases using the decedent’s name, place of employment, date and approximate time of death, or any other combination of identifying elements that can help differentiate existing cases from new ones. For some cases, the second source document is a questionnaire completed by the decedent’s employer or another informant. In instances where two source documents are unavailable, BLS and state employees review cases to determine if the data is sufficiently reliable for inclusion. If a fatality does not meet BLS’ criteria, the cases are marked out-of-scope and the data does not appear in either the national aggregate data or this report.

For injury-related fatalities to be included, cases must meet the following criteria: the incident must have occurred in Illinois, the death must have occurred during calendar year 2019, and the injury must be work-related according to the BLS guidelines. The injury must have occurred either on the employer’s premises while the person was there to work, or off the employer’s premises and the person was there to work or the event/exposure were related to the person’s work or employee status. “Work” is defined by the BLS guidelines as “duties, activities, or tasks that produce a product or result; that are done in exchange for money, goods, services, profit, or benefit; and that are legal activities in the United States.” Industrial sectors were classified according to the North American Industry Classification System, 2017 edition, and occupations were grouped according to the Standard Occupational Classification Manual, 2017 edition.

Results

The following data tables present some of the data collected during the 2019 CFOI cycle. Columns and rows may not add up to the total number or 100%, as not all included cases may be publishable. Cases that lack publicly accessed source documents and have three or less total cases associated with the subcategory are not published to protect the deceased’s privacy. Cells with double dash marks (--) are empty, due to unpublishable data or because there was no data reported.

Overall Trends

In 2019, there were 158 fatal occupational injuries reported, which is a decrease of 14.1% over the 184 work-related fatalities collected in the 2018 CFOI. (Figure 1)

Demographics

When documenting fatal occupational injuries, the Illinois CFOI collects data on the demographics of the decedent and the circumstances of the incident. Of the 158 injury-related fatalities in 2019, 129 (81.6%) occurred among wage/salary workers, and 29 (18.4%) occurred among the self-employed.

Men made up a significantly larger section of the fatally injured, with 142 (89.9%) injuries compared to the 16 (10.1%) fatal injuries sustained by women. People in the 55 to 64 years age groups had the highest occurrence of fatal injuries (21.5%). The next highest were those 35 to 44 years old (20.3%), and 45 to 54 years and older (19.6%). The majority of reported fatalities involved White, non-Hispanic workers (73.4%); Black workers were the second-highest reported fatalities (11.4%). (Table 1)

Incident Data

The industry sector (per NAICS codes 2017) that incurred the most injury-related fatalities with 30 (18.9% of the total) was construction; followed by transportation and warehousing with 24 (15.2% of the total); agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting with 15 (9.5% of the total); and leisure and hospitality with 13 (8.2 %of the total). (Table 2)

The major group occupations (per SOC classification 2010) suffering the most injury-related fatalities were transportation and material handlers with 41 fatalities (25.9% of the total); followed by construction and extraction occupations accounted with 30 (19.0% of the total). Management occupations were next with 20 fatalities (12.7% of the total). Protective service occupations with 17 fatalities (10.8% of the total) and installation, maintenance, and repair occupations had 11 fatalities (7.0% of the total). (Table 3)

The event or exposure causing the injury-related fatality is another important aspect in describing work-related fatalities. Transportation incidents continued to cause the most injury-related occupational fatalities in 2019 with 53 fatalities or 33.5% of all fatalities. Violence and other injuries by persons or animals are the second most prevalent type of incident causing 31 fatalities or 19.6% of all fatalities. Falls, slips, and trips (26 fatalities or 16.5% of all fatalities) and contact with objects and equipment (23 or 14.6% of all fatalities) were third and fourth in injury-related fatalities. (Table 4)

When cross tabulating the event or exposure that caused the injury-related fatality with the industry sector in which the fatality occurred, certain industries are more susceptible to certain events. Within industry sectors, transportation incidents were the leading cause of fatalities for transportation and warehousing (58.3%) and construction (23.3%). Violence and other injuries by persons or animals were the leading event for fatalities in accommodations and food services and other services, except public administration (54.5%). Contact with objects and equipment was the leading cause of fatalities for agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting (33.3%); construction (16.7%); and transportation and warehousing (20.8%). (Table 5)

Distribution of Fatal Occupational Injuries by Selected Socio-Demographic Characteristics, Private and Public Ownership, Illinois, 2019

Total Number of Fatalities: 158

Employment Status Number of Fatalities Percentages

Wage and salary workers

129 81.6%

Self-employed

29 18.4%
Gender Number of Fatalities Percentages

Male

142 89.9%

Women

16 10.1%
Age Number of Fatalities Percentages

<20

2 1.3%

20-24

8 5.1%

25-34

28 17.7%

35-44

32 20.3%

45-54

31 19.6%

55-64

34 21.5%

65 years and older

23 14.6%
Race/Ethnicity Number of Fatalities Percentages

White (non-Hispanic)

116 73.4%

Black

18 11.4%

Hispanic or Latino

17 10.8%

Number of Fatal Occupational Injuries, Illinois, 1999-2019

Distribution of Fatal Occupational Injuries by Industry, Illinois, 2019

Total Number of Fatalities: 158

Construction - 30 Fatalities (19.0%)

  • Heavy/civil engineering - 4 Fatalities (2.5%)

Transportation and warehousing - 24 Fatalities (15.2%)

  • General freight trucking - 12 Fatalities (7.6%)

Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting - 15 Fatalities (9.5%)

  • Crop production - 12 Fatalities (7.6%)

Leisure and hospitality - 13 Fatalities (8.2%)

Accommodation and food services - 11 Fatalities (7.0%)

  • Restaurants and other eating places - 9 Fatalities (5.7%)

Other services, except public administration - 11 Fatalities (7.0%)

  • Automotive repair and maintenance - 6 Fatalities (3.8%)

Administrative/support/waste management/remediation - 9 Fatalities (5.7%)

Wholesale trade - 6 Fatalities (3.8%)

  • Merchant, durable/nondurable goods - 3 Fatalities (1.9%)

Retail trade - 5 Fatalities (3.2%)

Arts, entertainment, and recreation - 2 Fatalities (1.2%)

Distribution of Fatal Occupational Injuries by Occupation, Illinois, 2019

Total Number of Fatalities: 158

Transportation and material handlers occupations - 41 Fatalities (25.9%)

  • Motor vehicle operators - 31 Fatalities (19.6%)

Construction and extraction occupations - 30 Fatalities (19.0%)

  • Contruction trade workers - 24 Fatalities (15.2%)
  • Supervisors - 3 Fatalities (1.9%)

Management occupations - 20 Fatalities (12.7%)

  • Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers - 11 Fatalities (7.0%)

Protective service occupations - 17 Fatalities (10.8%)

  • Law enforcement workers - 8 Fatalities (5.1%)

Installation, maintenance, and repair occupations - 11 Fatalities (7.0%)

  • Vehicle and mobile equipment mechanics, installers/repairers - 5 Fatalities (3.2%)

Production occupations - 7 Fatalities (4.4%)

  • Other production occupations - 4 Fatalities (2.5%)

Sales and related occupations - 7 Fatalities (4.4%)

  • Other sales and related occupations - 1 Fatality (0.6%)

Office and administrative support occupations - 6 Fatalities (3.8%)

  • Material recording, scheduling, dispatching, distribution - 3 Fatalities (1.9%)

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations - 5 Fatalities (3.2%)

  • Grounds maintenance - 3 Fatalities (1.9%)

Food preparation and serving related occupations - 4 Fatalities (2.5%)

Farming, fishing, and forestry occupations - 4 Fatalities (2.5%)

Distribution of Fatal Occupational Injuries by Event or Exposure, Illinois, 2019

Total Number of Fatalities: 158

Transportation incidents - 53 Fatalities (33.5%)

  • Roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicle - 29 Fatalities (18.4%)
  • Pedestrian vehicular incident - 14 Fatalities (8.9%)
  • Rail vehicle incidents - 5 Fatalities (3.2%)
  • Non-roadway incident involving motorized land vehicle - 5 Fatalities (3.2%)

Violence and other injuries by persons or animals - 31 Fatalities (19.6%)

  • Intentional injury by person - 29 Fatalities (18.4%)
    • Homicides - 21 Fatalities (13.3%)

Falls, slips, trips - 26 Fatalities (16.5%)

  • Falls to lower level - 18 Fatalities (11.4%)

Contact with objects and equipment - 23 Fatalities (14.6%)

  • Struck by object or equipment - 16 Fatalities (10.1%)
  • Caught in or compressed by equipment or objects - 4 Fatalities (2.5%)

Exposure to harmful substances or environments - 17 Fatalities (10.8%)

  • Exposure to electricity - 8 Fatalities (5.1%)
  • Exposure to other harmful substances - 7 Fatalities (4.4%)

Fatal Occupational Injuries by Industry and Event or Exposure, Private Ownership, Illinois, 2019

Industry Number of Fatalities Percentage of Fatalities Number of Fatalities From Transportation Percentage of Fatalities From Transportation Number of Fatalities From Violence and Other Injuries by Persons or Animals Percentage of Fatalities From Violence and Other Injuries by Persons or Animals Number of Fatalities From Contact with Objects and Equipment Percentage of Fatalities From Contact with Objects and Equipment Number of Fatalities From Falls, Slips, Trips Percentage of Fatalities From Falls, Slips, Trips Number of Fatalities From Exposure to Harmful Substances or Environments Percentage of Fatalities From Exposure to Harmful Substances or Environments Number of Fatalities From Fires and Explosions Percentage of Fatalities From Fires and Explosions

Agriculture, forestry, fishing, hunting

15 9.5% -- -- -- -- 5 33.3% -- -- -- -- -- --

Construction

30 19.0% 7 23.3% -- -- 5 16.7% -- -- -- -- -- --

Wholesale trade

6 3.8% -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

Retail trade

5 3.2% -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

Transportation and warehousing

24 15.2% 14 58.3% -- -- 5 20.8% -- -- -- -- -- --

Administrative and waste services

7 4.4% -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

Arts, entertainment, and recreation

2 1.3% -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

Accommodation and food services

11 7.0% -- -- 6 54.5% -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

Other services, except public administration

11 7.0% -- -- 6 54.5% -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --