Workplace Deaths Rise In Wyoming


By Staff 9-9,2015

The State released the third annual report on Work-related Fatal & Non-Fatal Injuries. The report contains analysis and trends in workplace accidents and deaths in Wyoming for the year 2014 and is accompanied by a 2014 Employment Demographic Profile.

The Occupational Epidemiologist statistics reports 34 workplace deaths in the State of Wyoming in 2014. Twenty-six fatalities were reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2013.

“I know the pain a family goes through when a loved one does not return home from work,” Governor Matt Mead said. “I am concerned about the increased fatalities in Wyoming. Wyoming has taken steps to improve workplace safety – hiring extra OSHA inspectors, gathering data to determine the causes of workplace incidents and offering businesses incentives for taking preventative action. More work needs to be done so those in the workplace return home safe to their families.”

About half of all 2014 occupational fatalities in Wyoming were due to transportation events. This is consistent with previous years. Factors contributing to transportation fatalities include driving too fast for road conditions, driver fatigue and failure to spot a person behind a backing vehicle.

Industries with the highest injury claims rates in 2014 include Manufacturing, Construction and Natural Resources and Mining, which includes Agriculture and Oil and Gas Extraction.

“Wyoming’s high work-related fatality rate is at least partly influenced by the proportion of the state’s workforce engaged in high-risk employment,” State Occupational Epidemiologist Meredith Towle said.

Two DWS programs monitor workplace-related deaths: the State Occupational Epidemiologist’s count of workplace deaths, and the federal CFOI program. Differences in program confidentiality rules, along with access to federal investigatory information means that the two strategies will likely produce different counts of workplace deaths. The programs have two different goals: the State-run program allows for a more detailed look at workplace deaths; while the CFOI program allows for the collection of national data across states. The CFOI report will be released on September 17, 2015.