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NOTE: This page is archived for historical purposes and is no longer being maintained or updated.
For the current work of the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing Program, please visit our directory page.

	farm, forest, fishing boat

Inputs: Occupational Safety and Health Risks

More than 3.1 million workers were employed in the agriculture, forestry, and fishing industry during 2001. Compared with all industries, agriculture employed proportionately more workers aged 16-19 (7.2% versus 5.1% for all industries) and workers aged 55 and older (22.9% versus 13.6% for all industries) [BLS 2001b]. Farm tractors accounted for 2,165 fatal occupational injuries during 1992-2001 and were the leading source of these deaths in agriculture, forestry, and fishing. Trucks and fishing boats were also major sources of death in this industry and accounted for 795 and 434 fatal occupational injuries, respectively. [BLS 2002a]; [Myers 2003]. During 1992-1997, machinery caused 1,021 fatal occupational injuries and was the leading cause of these deaths in agriculture, forestry, and fishing as reported on death certificates. The next leading causes of these deaths were motor vehicles (624 fatalities) and falls (235 fatalities).

Source: NIOSH Worker Health Chartbook, 2004


In 2009, Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing industries recorded 551 fatal work injuries. The majority of fatal injuries in these industries occurred in crop production (278).

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries Summary, 2008

Fatal occupational injuries* by private industry and selected event or exposure, 2009
Sector / Program Fatalities Selected event or exposure §
  Number Percent Highway Homicide Falls Contact with Object
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing 551 13 11 1 6 18
Crop production 278 6 13 1 1 17
Animal production 141 3 12 0 9 14
Forestry and logging 51 1 18 0 0 51

* Totals include data for industries not shown separately.

† Based on the North American Industry Classification System, 2002.

§ The figure shown is the percent of the total fatalities for that industry group.

Source: Fatal occupational injuries by industry and selected event or exposure, 2008 .

Additional BLS occupational fatality information can be found in the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries

Nonfatal injuries and illnesses


In 2008, the total reported nonfatal injuries and illnesses declined in private industry workplaces (3.9 cases / 100 FTE workers in 2008 compared with 4.2 cases / 100 FTE workers in 2007). While the incidence rate for Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing was significantly higher (4.9) than that of private industry (3.7) in 2008.

Source: BLS Workplace Injury and Illness Summary

Detailed data on nonfatal injuries and illnesses in the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing sector can be found at:

Number of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses involving days away from work by industry and selected events or exposures leading to injury or illness, 2008.

Additional BLS data on Case and Demographic Characteristics for Work-related Injuries and Illnesses Involving Days Away From Work

NIOSH Worker Health Chartbook, 2004
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication 2004 - 146
The Worker Health Chartbook, 2004 is a descriptive epidemiologic reference on occupational morbidity and mortality in the United States. A resource for agencies, organizations, employers, researchers, workers, and others who need to know about occupational injuries and illnesses, the Chartbook includes more than 400 figures and tables describing the magnitude, distribution, and trends of the Nation's occupational injuries, illnesses, and fatalities.

NOTE: Data presented in this document are based on the 1987 Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), which does not correspond directly with the 2002 NAICS. For information on converting 1987 SIC codes to 2002 NAICS codes, see: