April 17, 1998

Oregon on-the-job injuries led to 82 deaths in 1997

Among work environments where fatalities occurred, construction topped the list at 11

Oregon safety officials counted 82 fatalities from on-the-job injuries during 1997, down marginally from 85 the year before.

The number as calculated for the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics does not include deaths from work-related illnesses or other work-related factors.

Since 1991, fatalities from on-the-job injuries have fluctuated between 75 and 85 per year, the Oregon Department of Consumer & Business Services said.

The department also reported that 43 injury and illness-related fatalities were accepted as workers' compensation claims during 1997, down from the 1996 total of 54. Many self-employed workers aren't covered by workers' compensation, and others, such as police, fire and federal employees are covered separately, so their deaths are not included in that smaller fatality list.

Of the various work environments where fatalities occurred in 1997, construction topped the list at 11, followed by retail trade, six; transportation/public utilities five; and four each in government, services, manufacturing other than wood products and a combined category of agriculture, forestry and fishing.

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