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Leading causes of workplace deaths among women

As we discussed in an earlier post, worker deaths continue to rise despite ongoing safety efforts. While the majority of workplace deaths affect men, it is important not to ignore the unique safety risks that women face on the job.

Certain occupations remain dominated by one gender. Because construction, manufacturing and other industrial jobs are more often filled by men, women experience an overall lower rate of workplace injury and death. However, there are still strides to be made in keeping women safe at work.

What are the biggest dangers to working women?

  • Homicide -- According to the CDC, 27 percent of work-related deaths in women are caused by homicide. While robbery is a leading cause of workplace homicides overall, women are disproportionately affected by domestic violence in the workplace. While this may not be directly linked to workplace safety, it is important that employers take steps to ensure their female workers feel safe.
  • Vehicle accidents - Car, truck and other vehicle accidents affect many working women (though these accidents are more common among men). Any employee who drives in the course of his or her employment should have adequate safety training.
  • Slips, trips and falls - This includes slips on dangerous property like wet floors and icy sidewalks as well as falls from height . Vigilance and proper maintenance are essential in preventing these workplace deaths.
  • Being struck by equipment and falling objects -- Falling objects and heavy machinery can cause severe and fatal injuries to the brain, spinal cord and other parts of the body. Women in hazardous industries like construction and manufacturing are at significantly greater risk.

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