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September 2006
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2006-152

NIOSH Fatal Occupational Injury Cost Fact Sheet: Mining

Number, rate, and costs of fatal occupational injuries in the U.S. mining industry by selected characteristics, 1992–2002

  Costs (2003 dollars)
Characteristic Number of fatalities Fatality rate(per 100,000 workers) Total (millions) Mean(thousands) Median(thousands)
All incidents 1721 26.0 $1788 $1039 $1064
Male 1700 29.9 1768 1040 1066
Female 21 2.2 20 942 962
Race of decedent:
White 1594 25.7 1657 1039 1065
Black 62 22.1 66 1070 1063
Other* 65 45.8 65 999 1003
Age of decedent:
16–19 33 37.8 30 905 959
20–24 156 40.3 165 1055 1075
25–34 422 29.7 500 1185 1192
35–44 509 20.5 623 1223 1250
45–54 386 24.6 379 983 978
55–64 155 27.6 86 556 563
65+ 60 54.6 5 89 70
Occupation group:
Managerial and
professional specialty
85 5.0 109 1280 1489
Technical, sales, and
administrative support
36 3.9 41 1136 1144
Farming, forestry, and
Precision production,
craft, and repair
952 41.2 1088 1143 1218
Operators, fabricators,
and laborers
629 38.9 537 854 919
Event or exposure:
Contact with objects and
653 9.9 705 1079 1129
Falls 135 2.0 132 981 1011
Bodily reaction and
Exposure to harmful
substances or
179 2.7 189 1053 1057
521 7.9 518 993 1012
Fires and explosions 192 2.9 202 1050 1069
Assaults and violent acts

NOTE: Dashes indicate data that do not meet publication criteria.

*This category includes all other races, such as American Indian and Asian, as well as unknown or missing races.

Numbers are not reported for “unknown” or “not classified” categories.

Fatal Occupational Injury Cost Model

Theoretical Basis of Cost Estimation

The cost to society of a workplace fatality was estimated using the cost-of-illness approach, which combines direct and indirect costs to yield an overall cost of an occupational fatal injury. For these calculations, only medical expenses were used to estimate the direct cost associated with the fatality. The indirect cost was derived by calculating the present value of future earnings summed from the year of death until the decedent would have reached age 67, accounting for the probability of survival were it not for the premature death. (For more information, see Biddle, E [2004]. Economic Cost of Fatal Occupational Injuries in the United States, 1980–1997. Contemporary Economic Policy 22(3):370–381.)

Mathematical Representation of Indirect Costs

PVF = ΣPy,s (y+1)[Ys, j(n) + Yhs(n)] (1+g)n–y/(1+r)n–y

PVF = present discounted value of loss due to occupational fatal injury per person
Py,s (y+1) = probability that a person of race r, sex s, and age y will survive to age y+1
y = age of the person at death
s = sex of the person
n = age if the person had survived
Ys,j(n) = median annual earnings of an employed person of sex s, occupation j, and age n (includes benefits and life-cycle wage growth adjustment)
Yhs(n) = mean annual imputed value of home production of a person of sex s and age n
g = wage growth rate attributable to overall productivity
r = real discount rate (3%)

Data Sources

Fatality data: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI). These data exclude military personnel, decedents with unknown age or sex, fatalities occurring in New York City, and fatalities from the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Probability of survival: National Center for Health Statistics, Division of Vital Statistics.

Median annual earnings: BLS Current Population Survey. Wage data are based on the occupation of the decedent and the year of death adjusted by Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Deflator to base year of dollar. Life-cycle wage growth was calculated based on the rate of change in wages between age groups.

Benefits: U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Benefits data are based on the industry where the decedent was employed and the year of death adjusted by the GDP Deflator.

Mean annual home production: Expectancy Data that were derived by a time diary study sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and conducted by the University of Maryland.

Wage growth rate: Based on BLS Employment Cost Index (ECI)

Medical costs: National Council on Compensation Insurance. Costs are a 3-year average cost.

Employment estimates for rate calculations: BLS Current Population Survey.

Fatality Rate Calculations

Fatality rates were calculated by NIOSH and may differ from previously published BLS CFOI rates. Fatality rates were calculated as deaths per 100,000 workers. Fatality rates for sex, race, age group, and occupation were calculated using employment estimates by the individual characteristic within the specific industry sector. Employment estimates for the specific industry sector were used to generate rates for event.

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