There were 5,250 fatal work injuries, according to the BLS, recorded in the U.S. in 2018 – a 2% increase from the 5,147 recorded in 2017. Transportation incidents remained the most frequent type of fatal event at 2,080, accounting for 40% of all work-related fatalities.
Driver/sales workers and truck drivers accounted for the most fatalities of any broad occupation group at 966. Among all detailed occupations, heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers had the most fatalities at 831 – ten times more than drivers in “light truck or delivery services.”
In 2018, there were 621 fatal injuries to independent workers – a category which includes owner operator truckers. That figure is up from 613 in 2017. Independent workers made up 12% of all fatal injuries in 2018 and the occupation with the most fatal work injuries to independent workers last year was, you guessed it, “heavy and tractor trailer-truck drivers” with 96.