The 2018 Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation and Workplace Safety Annual Report (the “Report”) contains information based on data reported to the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation as of January 22, 2019. While the release of 2019’s report is still several months away, let’s look back at 2018’s report containing the most recent data surveyed in Pennsylvania.
*During 2018, 173,267 work injury and illness cases were reported to the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. The 2018 total is 949 less than the number reported in 2017. Fatalities decreased from 82 in 2017 to 66 in 2018. The most fatalities occurred in Trade, Transportation & Utilities (15), followed by Professional & Business Services (13).
*More than half (93,174 cases) of the 173,267 injury and illness cases reported in 2018 occurred in two sectors: Education & Health Services (48,415 cases, 27.9 percent) and Trade, Transportation & Utilities (44,759 cases, 25.8 percent).
*The injury rate per 1,000 workers decreased from 29.2 in 2017 to 28.8 in 2018. Professional & Business Services had the highest increase in 2018 (9.4 percentage points), followed by Manufacturing (0.9). Education & Health Services (-2.4) had the largest decrease, followed by Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing & Hunting (-2.2).
*Sprain/strain injuries (64,706 cases) accounted for 37.3 percent of total cases reported in 2018. The next three types of injuries accounted for over half (52.1 percent) of all reported injuries in 2018: contusions, crushing and bruising injuries (33,850 cases, 19.5 percent); “other” injuries and illnesses (28,661 cases, 16.5 percent); and cuts, lacerations, and punctures (27,802, 16.0 percent).
Together they accounted for 90,313 of the 173,267 reported injuries in Pennsylvania for 2018. The largest number of sprain/ strain cases (21,003 cases, 32.5 percent) affected the upper extremities. Most of the cuts, lacerations, and puncture injuries (20,270, 72.9 percent) also occurred to the upper extremities, while the greatest number of contusions, crushes, and bruises (10,833 cases, 32.0 percent) involved the lower extremities.
*Of the 173,267 injury and illness cases reported in 2018, 160,341 cases reported the gender of the injured worker.
*From the cases that reported gender, 57.1 percent of injured workers were male.
*Of the 66 fatality cases reported in 2018, 60 were male, five (5) were female, and one (1) did not disclose the gender. The median age of injured male workers was 41.3, while the median age of injured female workers was 42.4.
*The median age of all injured workers in 2018 was 41.9 years.
*Workers in the 25-29 age group sustained the greatest number of injuries in 2018. This age group had 21,270 cases, which represented 12.3 percent of the total reported.
*By industry, the median age of injured workers ranged from 32.0 in Leisure & Hospitality to 46.9 in Financial Activities. The largest number of fatalities (9) was reported in both the 55-59 and the 60-64 age groups.
Every day in Pennsylvania, circumstances occur in the workplace that, unfortunately, cause injuries to workers. For 113 years, Powell Law has litigated workers’ compensation actions and obtained benefits for injured Pennsylvania workers. At Powell Law, we effectively assist clients throughout the entire workers’ compensation claims process. Consult an experienced Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney. Contact Powell Law at (570) 961-0777. The consultation is FREE!