North Carolina’s workplace injury rate remained at a record low in 2010, down by nearly half in the past decade as negligence lawsuits, insurance premiums and training programs pressure employers to improve safety, the News and Observer reports.
The 2010 rate for construction dropped to 3.0 per 100 full-time workers from 3.1 in 2009, well below the national average of 4.0. The 2010 manufacturing rate increased slightly to 3.7 from 3.5 in 2009, but still remains below the national rate of 4.4.
Last year, the state’s injury rate was 3.1 cases per 100 full-time workers, one of the four lowest rates in the nation, according to data issued by the N.C. Department of Labor. The agency defines injury as an accident that results in unconsciousness, restriction of physical motion or restriction of the kind of work the injured employee can perform.
Only Louisiana, Texas and New York have lower workplace injury rates than North Carolina. North Carolina’s injury rate has fallen 45.6 percent since 1999, when the rate was 5.7 injuries per 100 workers. The Labor Department will issue on-the-job fatality data in January.
The injury data are not a tally of total injuries in the state but a rate per 100 workers. Thus it’s comparable with past years regardless of how many fewer people are working because of automation, layoffs, outsourcing, off-shoring or other cost-cutting strategies. Read More.