Advocacy groups

National COSH: Workplace deaths 'a wake-up call'

San Diego – Most U.S. workplace deaths are preventable, and several approaches can be taken to reduce exposures to hazardous conditions, suggests a new report from the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health.

Released April 23 in conjunction with Workers Memorial Week of Action, the report includes case studies of workers who died on the job during the past two years; an overview of the dangers of crystalline silica; and recommendations geared toward employers, federal OSHA and Congress on actions to help reduce workplace hazards.

“Each one of these workplace fatalities is a wake-up call,” Peter Dooley, National COSH senior consultant, said during a press conference announcing the report.

More than 4,000 workers die every year from workplace injuries, and an additional 50,000 die annually from occupational diseases – resulting in about 150 workers dying every day, according to Jessica Martinez, deputy director of National COSH.

Dooley called incidents leading to workplace deaths “extremely predictable and extremely preventable,” and said on-the-job hazards can be controlled through the implementation of workplace safety systems.

Workers Memorial Day is April 28.