Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses for 2012
This article summarizes the 2012 Wyoming Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses results. The data include estimates of incidence rates by industry and the nature of the injury or illness. Also included are some worker demographics, such as age and gender. State and local government data are discussed briefly. An estimated 2,410 nonfatal occupational injury and illness cases with days away from work occurred in private industry in Wyoming in 2012, with an incidence rate of 3.5.
The Research & Planning (R&P) section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services annually conducts the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) for Wyoming in cooperation with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as part of a nationwide data collection effort. The survey data identify the estimated incidence rates (see Definitions) of injuries and illnesses at the industry level. Detailed characteristics of severe injuries and illnesses (those that result in days away from work) also are identified. For 2011 and 2012, cases with job transfer or restriction for the following six private North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) sectors will also have demographic and injury/illness characteristics provided by employers:
- 238 – Specialty trade contractors
- 311 – Food manufacturing
- 444 – Building materials & garden equipment & supplies dealers
- 481 – Air transportation
- 493 – Warehousing & storage
- 623 – Nursing & residential care facilities
The data for the cases with days away from work can be used by employers and safety awareness groups to focus on prevention. The data are also used by regulatory agencies for tracking injury and illness trends, and to target safety resources.
Wyoming had an estimated 2,410 occupational injury and illness cases with days away from work in private industry in 2012.
(Editor's note: The Background and Methodology section appear in the online version of this article only.)
For this mandatory survey (see Definitions), 2,388 Wyoming private and 312 public sector (state and local government) employers were notified in December 2011 to keep records of their firms’ work-related injuries and illnesses during calendar year 2012 using the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) 300 forms. Along with data from the original firms sampled, occupational injury and illness data for 197 employers (from the mining, except oil & gas, and railroad industries) were added from administrative records developed during required incident reporting provided to BLS by two federal agencies: the U.S. Department of Labor, Mine Safety & Health Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration. In January 2013, public and private employers were sent a pamphlet describing how to transfer data from the OSHA 300 form to questionnaires available on the Internet or by e-mail.
Employers were asked to respond within 30 days. Two subsequent mailings were sent to non-respondents to increase response rates, after which attempts were made to contact these employers by phone to acquire the information. Employers were also contacted to verify or correct data. The data collection period lasted approximately seven months. After the data collection period, data and results were reviewed by regional and national BLS staff and incidence rates calculated.
About 9.9% of the 2,700 original sampled units were determined to be out of scope, had gone out of business since the sample was drawn, had a duplicate record, or otherwise did not meet the criteria for inclusion in the survey. Of the remaining sampled and BLS-provided employers, 94% provided useable responses for the survey.
Data were reported by employers on the basis of a single incident or occurrence. If an employee experienced more than one nonfatal work-related injury or illness during the calendar year, each incident was reported separately and is referred to as a case. If an incident injured more than one employee, each employee was reported separately on the questionnaire. To be categorized as a recordable case, an injury or illness must have required medical treatment beyond first aid (for additional information see the OSHA Recordkeeping Handbook at http://www.osha.gov/recordkeeping/handbook/ index.html#1904.5).
Data reported by employers to Worker’s Compensation has a higher number of work-related injuries and illnesses due to having different definitions and requirements than the SOII does. R&P provides data on the number of Worker’s Compensation cases by quarter and historically which can be found at http://doe.state.wy.us/LMI/safety.htm.
Due to the discrepancies in the numbers of work-related injuries and illnesses reported by both Worker’s Compensation and the SOII, there has been and continues to be research into this undercount. Information on the undercount can be found at http://www.bls.gov/iif/oshfaq1.htm#q02.
The BLS produces the SOII incidence rate estimates from the gathered data. Incidence rates by industry indicate the number of nonfatal occupational illnesses or injuries per 100 full-time employees. The cases deemed the most serious are those which involve days away from work (DAFW). The BLS counts up to a cap of 180 days away from work per case, even though there are cases with more days. The number of cases with days of restricted duty or job transfer is counted in the summary of injuries and/or illnesses. DAFW cases associated with employees who do not require time off work beyond the day of injury are not included as DAFW cases, but they may need to be included in the number of other recordable cases. Also counted in the summary of injuries and/or illnesses is the number of other recordable cases, which are cases requiring medical treatment beyond first aid but with no lost time, restricted duty, or job transfer days.
The total estimated incidence rate in Wyoming for all ownerships was 3.7 injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time employees in 2012. The private sector estimated incidence rate was 3.5. The rate for state and local government was 4.7 for 2012. For state government alone, the rate was 3.5; for local government alone, the rate was 5.1.
Figures 1a and 1b show the top 11 industry subsectors in all ownerships with high estimated incidence rates (or those with higher risk) in Wyoming and the United States, respectively for 2012. Six of the 11 top industry subsectors nationally were also found in Wyoming’s top 11 for 2012 (see Figures 1a and 1b). These were nursing & residential care facilities, air transportation, wood product manufacturing, hospitals, couriers & messengers, local government-nursing & residential care facilities. The five higher risk industry sectors that were unique to Wyoming were: local government-hospitals; local government-executive, legislative & other government support; social assistance; animal production (scope changed in 2009); and gasoline stations.
The relative standard error (RSE; see Definitions) computed by BLS was used to calculate the estimates, with a 95% confidence interval. The tables with the RSE’s are available upon request from R&P.
Case and Demographic Data
Table 1 shows the number of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses by selected characteristics for Wyoming from 2008 to 2012. These data show only cases with days away from work; they do not include cases that resulted solely in job transfer or restricted duty or those that were other recordable cases. There appears to be a general downward trend in the number of cases for each category over the years.
In 2012, males were 55.3% of Wyoming’s workforce (BLS, 2013a). Of the total of more serious work-related injuries and illnesses in 2012, 67.6% involved males. This compares with the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries & Illnesses (CFOI) data showing that 91.4% of Wyoming CFOI fatalities in 2012 were males (CFOI, 2013). Females made up 44.7% of the workforce in Wyoming (BLS, 2013a), but only 31.5% of workers who became more seriously injured or ill at work in 2012 were females.1
The percentage and number of age group populations by gender (BLS, 2013b) in Wyoming’s workforce in 2012 are shown in Table 2.
One age group with a noticeable decrease in employment is the 55-64 age group, which has decreased in number from 28,000 in 2011 to 26,000 in 2012 for males and from 25,000 in 2011 to 24,000 in 2012 for females (BLS2013b). R&P research has shown that the number of workplace fatalities is related to changes in overall employment (Manning, 2010). This may also be true for nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses.
Injury and Illness Characteristics
In 2012, in the trade, transportation, & utilities industry, an estimated 560 males and 260 females had cases with days away from work (see Figure 2). During that year, manufacturing had twice the number of males (100) than females (50) with cases resulting in days away from work. More females than males had cases with days away from work in educational & health services (290 and 40, respectively). For leisure and hospitality, in 2012 there were almost three times as many males as females (260 and 90, respectively) that had cases with days away from work.
Out of the major occupational groups, construction & extraction and transportation & material moving had a higher-than-average percentage (combined, nearly 40% of cases) of total workers with work-related injuries or illnesses in 2012 (see Figure 3). Far more males than females usually work in these occupational groups. Consequently, more males than females were injured in these types of occupations. These workers included construction laborers and heavy & tractor trailer truck drivers. However, more females than males were injured in the major occupational groups of health care support and personal care & service because more females than males were usually employed in these occupations. The highest percentage of injuries and illnesses by age group in 2012 was for workers age 45 to 54 (25.7% of cases; see Figure 4).
For injuries resulting in days away from work, the largest percentage for nature of injury or illness was due to sprains, strains, and tears (44.4% in 2012; see Figure 5). Often the injuries were caused by falling, lifting, twisting and bending, standing or sitting, throwing, or reaching. This suggests that employers should place additional emphasis on sprain, strain, and tear prevention.
Due to the changes in the case and demographic data coding manuals in 2011, some of the estimates have different titles or inclusions that were not there previously.
From 2011 to 2012, Wyoming experienced essentially no change in the number of work-related injuries and illnesses resulting in days away from work for private industry. Overall, males continued to experience work-related injuries and illnesses more frequently than females. This was likely due, in part, to higher ratios of males to females employed in industries with higher incidence rates; the exception was educational & health services. More detail on 2012 data, as well as historical data and further documentation are available at http://doe.state.wy.us/LMI/OSH/toc.htm. For more information, contact Valerie A. Davis at (307) 473-3838 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries and Illnesses, Wyoming. (2013). Retrieved April 4, 2014 from http://doe.state.wy.us/LMI/CFOI/toc.htm
Manning, P. (2010). Employment change and impacts on workplace fatalities in Wyoming. (August, 2010). Wyoming Department of Employment, Research & Planning, Casper: WY. Retrieved April 4, 2014 from http://doe.state.wy.us/LMI/safety/CFOI_Reg_Model_2010.pdf
U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Division of Local Area Unemployment Statistics. (2013a). Employment status of the civilian noninstitutional population by sex, age, race, Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, and marital status, 2012 annual averages. Retrieved April 4, 2014, from http://www.bls.gov/opub/gp/pdf/gp12_14.pdf
U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Division of Local Area Unemployment Statistics. (2013b). Employment status of the civilian noninstitutional population by sex, race, Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, marital status, and detailed age, 2012 annual averages. Retrieved April 4, 2014, from http://www.bls.gov/lau/table14full12.pdf