The most recent data provided by Minnesota’s Department of Labor and Industry indicates that the number of workplace accidents has been decreasing. While on-the-job accidents may be on a decline, the impact of devastating workplace injuries remains. Job-related injuries often cause employees to seek compensation for expensive and lengthy medical treatments, rehabilitation, and pain and suffering.

An employer must ensure that its workers receive proper training and ample warning when faced with possible risks. Providing adequate safety equipment is mandatory in many circumstances. Employers found negligent in providing a safe and healthy workplace may face liabilities for injuries, damages and wrongful deaths.

Rate of workplace accidents

As noted by Minnesota’s Department of Labor and Industry, the number of accidents reported revealed that 3.2 nonfatal injuries and illnesses occurred at work for every 100 full-time employees in 2018. This rate was lower than the prior year, which had 3.3 nonfatal workplace incidents for every 100 full-time employees.

Even with a slight improvement in year-over-year workplace accidents, the Gopher State’s employees experienced more job-related injuries than the national average. Data collected by the U.S. BLS shows that for every 100 full-time employees across the nation, an average of 3.1 workplace incidents occurred during 2018.

Frequent causes of employee injuries

Overall, the highest rate of workplace accidents in 2018 involved employees in the construction industry. For every 100 full-time employees, five workplace accidents reportedly occurred. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website lists transportation accidents at construction sites as one of the highest risks that employees face for injuries and fatalities.

Included in the construction industry category are cases of pedestrian employees struck by a moving bulldozer or dump truck and suffering serious injuries requiring lengthy recovery time. Falling from heights also results in devastating injuries, and deaths are not uncommon.

Many on-the-job accidents require injured employees to seek relief by filing for workers’ compensation. According to Minnesota’s DLI, back problems accounted for 19% of workers’ injuries during 2018, followed by 10% head injuries and 10% hand injuries. The median amount of time off needed to recover was six days.