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Nov. 12, 2013

Survey shows Minnesota workplace injury rate near all-time low

A survey estimates Minnesota's workplace injury and illness rate for 2012 has increased slightly from the all-time low mark in 2011. According to the annual Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses, the state had an estimated 3.9 nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time-equivalent (FTE) workers in 2012. This is up slightly from the 2011 estimate of 3.8 cases per 100 FTE workers, and the same rate as in 2010.

The survey estimated the number of Minnesota's nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses to be 77,600 for 2012, up from 75,400 for 2011. Neither the change in the number of cases nor the injury and illness rate was statistically significant.

Minnesota's nonfederal employment has remained at 2.52 million in 2011 and 2012.

"The 2012 rate continues an overall pattern of statistically significant declines that have occurred annually for the past decade," said Ken Peterson, Department of Labor and Industry commissioner. "While this is good news overall, there is still much work to do to improve workplace safety and health and reduce the burden of occupational injuries and illnesses on workers, families and employers."

For the survey, the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) collects injury and illness records from randomly sampled Minnesota employers in the private and public sectors (excluding federal agencies). Approximately 4,700 employers participated in the 2012 survey. State agencies and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) compile the nationwide survey data, which is the primary source of workplace injury and illness statistics at the state and national levels.

Nationally, an estimated 3.8 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported in private- and public-sector workplaces for 2012, resulting in a rate of 3.7 cases per 100 FTE workers.

Other results from the Minnesota survey
The 2012 Minnesota survey estimated 36,500 injuries and illnesses resulting in days away from work, job transfer or restrictions after the day of injury. The rate of these cases was 1.8 per 100 FTE workers, unchanged from 2011. An estimated 1.1 cases per 100 FTE workers in 2012 led to one or more days away from work after the day of injury, unchanged from 2011.

The industry divisions with the highest total injury and illness rates were:  agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting (7.0 cases per 100 FTE workers); health care and social assistance (5.3); construction (5.1); and transportation and warehousing (5.1).

Minnesota data tables are available on the DLI website at www.dli.mn.gov/RS/StatWSH.asp. National data tables are available on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/iif/oshsum.htm.

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