According to data from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, there was a 17% decline in fatal workplace injuries from 1992 to 2017. However, the data also showed that there was a 56% increase in fatal workplace injuries among older workers in Georgia and throughout the country during this same time period. The higher fatality rate is partially because a greater number of older Americans have entered or remained in the labor pool.
An older worker is defined as anyone who is age 55 or older, and they were the most likely to experience a fatal injury compared to the workforce as a whole. The fatality rate for workers aged 65 and older was 10.3 for every 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees. The average fatality rate is 3.4 per every 100,000 FTE workers. Older individuals who worked as farmers or commercials truck drivers were most likely to die from a workplace injury.
Between 2003 and 2017, one out of every seven older workers who died on the job was a farmer. Of those workers who were killed because of injuries sustained while working as a farmer, 47% were working on a tractor when they were injured. Other common causes of older farmer deaths included accidents involving trees or using agricultural or gardening equipment.
People who are hurt while at work may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. If a worker dies while on the job, a family member may be entitled to claim a death benefit on that person’s behalf. An attorney may be able to explain how a person would pursue compensation that may be available in the aftermath of a workplace accident.