What are the ten most dangerous jobs in America?
The most dangerous jobs in America range from loggers to landscapers, from truck drivers to airline pilots. With 5,333 workplace deaths recorded in 2019, the most dangerous jobs in American can not only cost you your life if you choose to work once, but it can also affect the price of insurance. Insurance companies consider many factors when determining the price of your insurance, and your occupation is one of them. Some companies won’t offer certain life insurance products to specific jobs.
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UPDATED: Dec 12, 2021
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- The ten most dangerous jobs are different each year, but the list usually contains the same industries year after year
- Working in one of the most dangerous jobs can affect the price of your health insurance, car insurance, and life insurance
- In 2020, logging was the most dangerous job in America
While every job has its downside, some jobs are far more dangerous than others. In fact, some jobs have a higher death rate. The most common incidents that lead to death are falls, trips, and car accidents.
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the most dangerous jobs involve transportation incidents — the most fatal workplace accidents occur on the road. The second most deadly disasters happen during trips, slips, or falls, and the third most tragic encounters involve hazardous environments.
Despite the danger, these jobs are popular because they typically pay well and are vital to the economy; therefore, there’s always an opening.
Those who work these dangerous jobs tend to overlook that they can affect the cost of their insurance. Life insurance, health insurance, and auto insurance may all be affected by the type of work you do.
If you work in one of the most dangerous jobs in America, and you need insurance, you should shop around to find the best rates for your profession. If you’re ready to see what quotes might look like for you, enter your ZIP code into our free tool today.
The Ten Most Dangerous Jobs in America
Each year, the Bureau of Labor releases information on how many deaths occur in the workplace, which jobs had the highest fatality rates and injuries, and whether they did better or worse from the following year.
The ranking is slightly different each year, but the top 25 most dangerous jobs in America typically list the same industries. From logging to driving to farming, here are the top ten hazardous jobs as of 2020.
Number Ten: Landscapers, Groundskeepers, Gardeners, and Tree Maintenance Workers
At the bottom of the list (but with an average fatality rate of five times higher than the national average) are the people that keep yards and grounds looking beautiful.
Groundskeepers and landscapers earn a spot in the top ten because they are constantly exposed to the elements and dangerous equipment. The fatality rate for this industry is 20.2 deaths per 100,000 full-time employees.
Number Nine: Construction and Extraction Supervisors
Note that the number nine rank is reserved for supervisors in the construction or extraction industries, not the workers beneath them. Supervisors are more likely to be involved in fatal accidents than other construction or extraction workers.
With a fatality rate of 21 deaths per 100,000 workers, falls are the most deadly occurrence in this industry. For supervisors, half of all fatal on-the-job accidents are caused by falls. The other significant danger in this job is the risk of being struck by either a swinging or a falling object.
While supervisors are the main casualties, this group includes electricians, equipment operators, building inspectors, and carpenters.
Number Eight: Iron and Steelworkers in Construction
These workers put together colossal steel and iron structures, and it’s no wonder that they rank so high. However, the number one risk to these workers isn’t the heaviness of the materials they work with — it’s actually slips and falls that cause the most accidents.
With 23.6 deaths per 100,000 workers, iron and steelworkers build bridges, buildings, and roads while facing tremendous stress and danger. They also use dangerous equipment to bend, cut, and weld materials, increasing their likelihood of injury.
Number Seven: Farmers and Ranchers
Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural workers provide one of the most valuable services to society: they grow the food that lines your local grocery store’s shelves. Despite technological advances, agricultural workers still have to work long, hard hours to make a living.
This industry has 24.7 deaths per 100,000 workers, mainly from accidents with motorized vehicles like tractors.
Number Six: Truckers and Delivery Drivers
Even though they are combined in the same category, truck drivers and delivery drivers are two very different jobs. Truck drivers need a commercial driver’s license and pull trailers or other heavy equipment with a tractor. However, delivery drivers use either their personal car or a company vehicle to deliver food, packages, or other individual items.
Regardless of the driver type, the danger here is extended hours on the road. The longer you drive, the more likely you will be involved in a car accident. With 26 deaths per 100,000 workers, accidents are responsible for nearly every injury.
The dangers that these drivers face every day are the reason why they need specific insurance. Truckers should consider commercial trucking insurance, while delivery drivers can obtain either standard commercial auto insurance or a rideshare plan.
Number Five: Trash and Recycling Workers
When people think of trash collectors, they usually consider the smell as the worst part of the job. Unfortunately, collecting residential trash and recyclables is a dangerous profession.
With 44.3 deaths per 100,000 workers, waste collectors have the highest risk of being hit by a car while making their stops. Passing cars fail to slow down as they maneuver around the garbage truck and hit either the trash collecting vehicle or the employee.
Number Four: Roofers
Roofers perform a vital service by keeping a roof over your head. With all the skills needed and the dangerous conditions they work in, it’s no wonder that roofers are number four on the list.
Roofers suffer a whopping 51.5 deaths per 100,000 workers. That number is influenced by their climbing up and down ladders all day and walking around on steep, and sometimes slippery, roofs. You can probably guess that most workplace deaths for roofers result from falling.
Roofers are also more susceptible to illnesses and injuries from exposure to roofing materials.
Number Three: Pilots
You’re more likely to die in a car accident than a plane crash, but pilots can’t say the same thing. They rank as the third most dangerous job in America, with 58.9 deaths per 100,000 workers. This rank includes pilots for commercial airlines, helicopters, and private planes.
Pilots are primarily killed in plane crashes, and they are notorious for living unhealthy lifestyles. Airline pilots often have chronic health problems from the stress of long hours, the responsibility of getting passengers to their destination, and jetlag that never quite goes away.
It is so well-known that pilots struggle with health and lifestyle issues that life insurance companies usually place them in higher-risk ratings.
Number Two: Fishermen
The fishing industry might not come to mind when you think of the most dangerous job in America, but fishing switches between first and second place most years. The fishing industry jumps to 77.4 deaths per 100,000 workers. It’s a dramatic leap from third place.
So, what causes these fatalities? There are several dangers inherent in the fishing industry:
- Deck falls
- Malfunctioning equipment
- Hostile weather
- Unexpected waves
With so much to contend with, it’s easy to see why fishermen are at such a high risk.
Number One: Loggers
While the number one spot changes every year, loggers often take the position. With 97.6 deaths per 100,000 workers in 2020, loggers have the most dangerous occupation in America.
Loggers work in natural environments to provide raw wood as a resource. They work in isolated areas, making it difficult to transport them to a hospital in the event of a serious injury.
Logging deaths derive from contact with heavy equipment and falling logs. Logging is so dangerous that industry experts continuously attempt to create safer ways to work.
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Find Insurance for the Most Dangerous Jobs
People who work in any of the most dangerous jobs can take pride in their labor because they comprise the backbone of the American economy. Without them, things wouldn’t be the same.
Insurance is integral to protect everything valuable in your life, but a position in any of the most dangerous jobs in America can result in higher rates. Shopping for quotes is vital to save money. If you’re ready to see what rates might look like for you, enter your ZIP code into our free tool today.