Proceedings of the 128th Annual Meeting of the American Public Health Association, Boston, MA, November 13-16, 2000. Washington, DC: American Public Health Association, :622
Analysis of Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries research files** indicates that occupational fatalities from highway incidents increased 20% from 1992-1997. Truck-related deaths (those in which a worker 16 or older was killed in a highway incident) contributed 55% of the 7,596 highway fatalities, increasing 42%. Tractor-trailers (49%) and pickup trucks (19%) were most often involved. The transportation, communications, and public utilities industry (TCPU) had the highest frequency and rate (2,016 deaths, 3.87), seven times the overall rate of 0.57 per 100,000 workers. The predominant events were highway collisions (40%), highway non-collisions (34%), and a truck striking a stationary object on the roadside (19%). In general, industry was associated with truck type, which was in turn associated with event type. For example, tractor-trailer (74%) and dump truck (45%) fatalities were concentrated in TCPU. In contrast, deaths involving pickup and delivery trucks were more evenly distributed by industry. Additionally, for pickup trucks, the ratio of collisions to non-collisions and stationary object incidents was 1.9, while for tractor trailers and dump trucks combined, the same ratio was .48. Comparison of fatality rates is useful for assessing risks among worker groups and suggesting where injury prevention programs might best be implemented. However, rates based on employment are limited by their inability to address differences in exposure to traffic. Future research should include development of fatality rates by vehicle miles traveled, or for long-haul trucking, by ton-miles traveled.