Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer » Blog » The 5 Most Dangerous Occupations

The 5 Most Dangerous Occupations

Work can be flat-out dangerous. Every 7 seconds, a worker is injured on the job in America, which equals out to about 4.6 million injuries per year. These numbers aren’t as high as they are because every job is just as dangerous as the next. The fact is, some jobs are more dangerous than others, and you’re more likely to get injured working in certain occupations. The prevalence and frequency of injuries in these occupations boosts the average rate of injury if you’re looking at injury statistics for all occupations combined.


To increase awareness of workplace injuries and encourage caution, May 1st is International Workers’ Day. To increase your awareness of how dangerous it is to do certain jobs, consider the following list. This shouldn’t deter you from taking a position, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to know what you’re up against.

Agricultural Occupations

There are a lot of different roles to fill in agriculture, which is mainly made up of physical work, meaning the chances of injuries occurring are high. Every day, about 100 agricultural workers suffer a lost-work-time injury, and the fatality rate for farmers and farm-hands was 21.4 deaths per 100,000 workers in 2016. Moreover, kids are working on these farms, and 12,000 of them were injured onsite in 2014, with 4,000 of those injuries related to farm-work.

Transportation incidents and tractor overturns were the leading causes of death for farmers and farm workers in 2016. When it comes to non-fatal injuries, about 50 percent of crop-workers reported sprains and strains from 2008 to 2010, no doubt due to overexertion and the physical demands of the job. As for tractor rollovers, farmers could use Rollover Protective Structures (ROPS) to help prevent deaths, but only 62 percent of tractors were equipped with ROPS in 2014.


It might come as a surprise that the veterinary profession can be dangerous. A survey of vets in Minnesota, published in 2014 by the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, revealed that, out of 1,052 respondents, there were 1,827 work-related injury events in a 12-month period. This means some of the respondents — 53 percent of them, to be precise — suffered more than one injury.

Of the respondents, 54 percent were injured trying to restrain an animal, 20 percent were injured during treatment, and 9 percent hurt themselves trying to lift animals or objects. The most common types of injuries were bites, at 52 percent, cuts, lacerations, or scratches, at 31 percent, and bruises or contusions, at 22 percent.

Vets are regularly exposed to scared or upset animals that may act out in unexpected ways. Moreover, the everyday course of the job involves physical activities that may result in injury.

Healthcare Worker

While vets are in danger because they care for animals, healthcare workers are in danger because they care for people. OSHA reports that 253,700 hospital workers suffered work-related injuries and illnesses in 2011 alone. This puts hospitals on the list as one of the most dangerous types of places in which to work. The only saving grace is the proximity of care when a hospital worker is injured.

OSHA’s data reveals that the majority of injuries (54 percent) were sprains and strains, which makes sense given the amount and type of movement required to care for patients. Overexertion led to nearly half of the injuries, while interactions with patients were responsible for around one-third of the sick days hospital workers had to take due to injury or illness. The large variety of healthcare occupations in hospitals increases the potential for danger.

Police Officer

It should come as no real surprise that being a police officer is dangerous — but you might be shocked to know exactly how hazardous police work is. On average, 115 police and sheriff’s patrol officers suffered fatal work injuries each year from 2003 to 2014.

Police officers are faced with work-related hazards on a daily basis. When it comes to line of duty deaths in 2019, 24 officers have been killed by purposeful and accidental gunfire (as of this writing). Vehicle-related incidents were the next most common cause of death, with a total of 21 casualties from crashes, motorists who ran into officers, or vehicular assault cases. Another notable cause of death is heart attacks, which have accounted for 7 officer fatalities so far this year.

Other risks to officers include duty-related illness, drowning, and accidents of one sort or another. All told, our civil servants are at risk of injury and death from the widest variety of causes out of anyone on this list.

Construction Laborer

Construction workers face danger on a regular basis, and a simple hardhat can’t alleviate these concerns. In 2017, 20.7 percent of workers who died working jobs in private industries were construction workers. Therefore, one in five worker deaths occurred in the construction industry.

Falls were the leading cause of death, and the next most common cause was getting struck by an object. Electrocution came in as the third most fatal incident, and the fourth was getting squeezed and/or crushed to death between objects.

Many workers employed in the most dangerous professions seem to labor in the background. Buildings go up, food hits the shelves, wounds heal, and criminals get arrested. But without these workers, society wouldn’t be able to function. Keeping them safe is extremely important.

Any worker who is hurt on the job should seek legal advice and go over their Workers’ Compensation Laws with an attorney.

Summerlin Location

11441 Allerton Park Dr #100
Las Vegas, NV 89135

Phone: 702-684-6900

Fax: 702-382-9798

Downtown Location

626 S 10th St
Las Vegas, NV 89101

Phone: 702-382-9797

Fax: 702-382-9798

Henderson Location

9230 S Eastern Ave #155
Las Vegas, NV 89123

Phone: 702-463-2900

Fax: 702-382-9798

Reno Location

1320 E Plumb Lane Ste A
Reno, NV 89502

Phone: 775-600-6000

Fax: 702-382-9798

Nevada Personal Injury Attorney

Joseph L. Benson II, and Ben J. Bingham, Personal Injury Attorneys

Free Consultation

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.