Press Release

August 25, 2005



SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois saw a slight increase in the number of workplace fatalities in 2004. Following a record low of 190 work-related fatalities in 2002, the number rose to 200 in 2003 and to 208 in 2004, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health’s 13th annual census of on the job deaths. The highest number of occupational fatalities was 262 in 1996.

Workplace deaths are grouped into various categories, including occupation and industry, type of event, and the sex, race and age of the worker who died.

More than one-third of the fatalities in 2004 were caused by transportation incidents (83 deaths, 40 percent), including collisions, non-collisions and pedestrians struck by a vehicle. Assaults and violent acts were the second leading cause of workplace deaths with 41 (20 percent). Other notable events were contact with objects and equipment (33 deaths, 16 percent) and falls (29 deaths, 14 percent).

Transportation and material moving jobs suffered the most fatalities with 51 deaths (25 percent). When compared by industry, the construction industry had the most deaths with 41 (20 percent), followed by the transportation and warehousing industry with 35 (17 percent).

Fatal workplace injuries were highest among men (191 deaths, 92 percent), workers 45 to 54 years of age (63 deaths, 30 percent), and whites (183 deaths, 88 percent). In 2003, men also suffered the most fatalities (185 deaths, 93 percent), workers 45 to 54 years of age (54 deaths, 27 percent) were the leading age group for occupational deaths and whites (163 deaths, 82 percent) had the most job-related deaths.

The Department’s Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, which began in 1992, is part of a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics effort to provide a complete count of fatal work injuries in all 50 states. Information is compiled from a variety of sources, including death certificates, worker’s compensation reports, transportation department reports, U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports and news media accounts.


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Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466
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