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OSHA Releases New Workplace Safety Data

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has released 2023 injury and illness data collected from more than 375,000 organizations, including those in high-hazard industries.

Preliminary analysis found that among occupational injury and illness cases reported to OSHA:

  • 90 percent were injuries.
  • 5 percent were skin conditions, poisonings or other illnesses.
  • 4 percent were respiratory diseases.
  • 1 percent were hearing loss.

A higher proportion of cases were coded as injuries in the wholesale trade (97 percent), construction (96 percent) and transportation/warehousing industries (95 percent) than in other sectors, according to Kimberly M. Darby, OSHA spokesperson.

Respiratory diseases were more common in the health care and social assistance sector (12 percent) than in other industries. Hearing loss was more common in manufacturing (4 percent) and retail trade (3 percent) than in other industry sectors.

The data was gathered under OSHA’s new Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses regulation published in July 2023. The intent, it said, is to help identify unsafe conditions and workplace hazards that may cause occupational injuries and illnesses and improve research on the occurrence, prevention and control of workplace hazards, injuries and illness types.

Work-related injuries in the U.S. claim the lives of about 15 people daily, according to an OSHA news release. In 2022, 5,486 workers had fatal injuries, an increase of 296 worker deaths from 2021, the agency noted.

The data was released ahead of Workers Memorial Day on April 28, which honors “people who didn’t come home at the end of their [work] shift,” the agency noted on its website.

It is planning multiple events April 22-25, including sessions on the OSHA inspection process, mental health after a safety incident, a general overview of workers’ compensation, and teens’ knowledge of safety in the workplace.

SHRM Online collected the following news articles and resources related to worker safety:

Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs

These recommended practices are designed to be used in a wide variety of small and midsize business settings and are presented in a step-by-step approach built around seven core elements that make up a successful program.

Traditional approaches are often reactive, OSHA said, with problems addressed after a worker is injured or becomes sick, a new standard or regulation is published, or an outside inspection finds a problem that must be fixed. The recommended practices use a proactive approach to managing workplace safety and health.


[SHRM toolkit: Developing Effective Safety Management Programs]

Companies Turn to AI to Improve Workplace Safety

Companies are turning to artificial intelligence, advanced data analytics tools and other safety-related technologies, according to a report from the National Safety Council, a nonprofit safety advocacy organization based in Itasca, Ill. The report evaluated recent findings from academic and industry journals and identified three new technologies having a strong impact on the prevention of workplace illness, injury and death.

(SHRM Online)

Ensuring Workplace Safety Requires More Than Policies and Procedures

The biggest impediment to a safe workplace is the erroneous belief that “It will never happen to me,” which encourages individuals not to follow policies and procedures. A second misconception is the belief that a workplace safety incident only impacts the injured person. In fact, it creates a ripple effect.



​An organization run by AI is not a futuristic concept. Such technology is already a part of many workplaces and will continue to shape the labor market and HR. Here's how employers and employees can successfully manage generative AI and other AI-powered systems.