California’s Nonfatal Worker Injuries, Illnesses Remain Stable for 2015

California’s Nonfatal Worker Injuries, Illnesses Remain Stable for 2015



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OAKLAND, California, Oct. 27, 2016 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) has posted California’s 2015 occupational injury and illness summary data on employer-reported injuries. According to the estimates provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII), California’s overall incidence rate of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses remains unchanged at 3.8 cases per 100 workers for full time employees, the lowest rate in over a decade. Detailed case and demographic data for 2015 will be published on November 10.  

Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161027/433382
Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161027/433381

“In California we review statistics to assist in focusing our regulatory and enforcement efforts,” said DIR Director Christine Baker.  “This preliminary data along with the case and demographic statistics to be published next month will help us refine and strengthen workplace safety and health regulations, training materials, and outreach and education efforts for employers and workers.” 

The estimates show there were approximately 470,600 nonfatal reportable job related injuries and illnesses in 2015, with 77% occurring in private industry and 23% in state and local government sectors. The total numbers of injuries and illnesses increased slightly year to year, which correlates to an uptick in the state’s employed labor force from 17.4 million in 2014 to 17.8 million in 2015. The statewide all-industry rate of “lost time” cases, (referred to in the survey as “days away from work, job transfer, or restriction” (DART) cases) remained constant at 2.2 cases per 100 full time workers over the last three years surveyed, while the rate of days away from work cases (DAFW) has remained unchanged for the last seven years.

By industry in 2015, the days away from work (DAFW) rate in the Construction industry improved 23%, from 1.8 to 1.4 cases per 100 workers, while the Administrative Support and Waste Management sector’s rate improved 36% from 1.4 to 0.9 cases per 100 full time workers. The days away from work rate in the Trade, Transportation and Utilities sector increased from 1.2 to 1.3 cases per 100, and the Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting sector’s rate increased from 1.5 to 1.6 cases per 100 full time employees.

Estimates for the California Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses are derived from a statistical sample of 16,000 employers in the state. The SOII program is administered by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in cooperation with participating state agencies. Under the OSHA Recordkeeping regulation (29 CFR 1904), covered employers are required to prepare and maintain records of serious occupational injuries and illnesses, using the OSHA 300 Log.

Additional background and methodological information regarding the BLS occupational safety and health statistics program can be found in Chapter 9 of the BLS Handbook of Methods. Employment data are annual averages from the BLS Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program.

DIR protects and improves the health, safety and economic well-being of over 18 million wage earners, and helps their employers comply with state labor laws. Its’ Division of Occupational Safety and Health, commonly known as Cal/OSHA, helps protect workers from health and safety hazards on the job in almost every workplace in California. Cal/OSHA does not have authority when injuries occur on public roadways. Cal/OSHA’s Consultation Services Branch provides free and voluntary assistance to employers and employee organizations to improve their health and safety programs. Employers should call (800) 963-9424 for assistance from Cal/OSHA Consultation Services.

Employees with work-related questions or complaints may contact DIR’s Call Center in English or Spanish at 844-LABOR-DIR (844-522-6734). The California Workers’ Information line at 866-924-9757 provides recorded information in English and Spanish on a variety of work-related topics. Complaints can also be filed confidentially with Cal/OSHA district offices.

Members of the press may contact Erika Monterroza or Peter Melton at (510) 286-1161, and are encouraged to subscribe to get email alerts on DIR’s press releases or other departmental updates.

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The California Department of Industrial Relations, established in 1927, protects and improves the health, safety, and economic well-being of over 18 million wage earners, and helps their employers comply with state labor laws. DIR is housed within the Labor & Workforce Development Agency. For general inquiries, contact DIR’s Communications Call Center at 844-LABOR-DIR (844-522-6734) for help in locating the appropriate division or program in our department.

California’s Nonfatal Worker Injuries, Illnesses Remain Stable for 2015