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ISN Report: Injury Trends Show 2022 Rise in Fatalities

Six-Year Data Reveals Key Insights for Transportation, Oil and Gas, and Other Industries


The latest Serious Injuries and Fatalities (SIFs) white paper from ISN details six years of data and provides an in-depth analysis of recordable incidents across industries that often rely heavily on cranes and heavy haul equipment.

For the new edition of the report, ISN added 2022 data to its previous five-year exploration of SIFs along with spotlights for the transportation, oil and gas, manufacturing, mining and utilities industries. The data covers more than 127,000 recordable incidents from 2017-2022 showing nearly 24,000 SIFs cases, including more than 20,000 hospitalizations, 3,154 amputations and 871 fatalities.

Key Findings in the New ISN SIFs White Paper Include:

Sprains, strains and tears return as No. 1 incident category amid an aging workforce. 

After an anomaly in 2021, 2022 data shows a return of sprains, strains and tears as the No. 1 incident reported by contractors from all industries, replacing fractures and dislocations. This can be correlated with an aging workforce. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment of workers aged 75 years and older is expected to grow by 96.5% over the next decade. As older workers are more prone to injuries through falls, tailoring occupational safeguards around this aging workforce demographic will be key to decreasing the number of sprains, strains and tears among workers.

Contact with Object or Equipment was the most common cause of fatalities in 2022.

As workforces ramped back up to pre-pandemic capacity, several factors played into fluctuations in SIF data for 2022, including a stabilization of exposure hours, temporary and new workforces, as well as a relearning period from significant dips in work activity. A drastic increase in the number of fatalities was seen in 2022, with the top three causes including contact with object or equipment (55%), trips, slips and falls (21%), and overexertion & bodily reaction (13%).

Mid-size corporations experience the highest rates of fatalities.

SN’s analysis also considered the connection between company size and the likelihood of a SIF occurrence. Interestingly, the highest rate of fatalities is not correlated with the largest company size, but rather mid-size corporations. Much like total recordable incident rate (TRIR), smaller companies who have a SIF event occur are seeing the biggest impact in their overall SIF rate for each SIF event. Regardless of company size, SIFs have a significant impact on both the affected individual and the organization.

Hospitalization cases are stabilizing.

Over the data’s six-year span, an interesting trend was identified with hospitalization cases. The COVID-19 outbreak in 2020 resulted in elevated hospitalization cases despite the downturn in work activity. For 2022, however, ISN’s analysis shows a stabilization of cases with statistics that begin to return to pre-pandemic data sets. In addition, 2022 saw the lowest number of amputation cases in the last six years. Unfortunately, however, the number of fatalities drastically increased.

“As reducing SIFs remains a focus across industries, ISN is committed to developing avenues for organizations to meet their safety goals through best practices that improve hazard recognition,” said Brian Callahan, president and chief operating officer of ISN. “Organizations that anchor their safety initiatives in real-time data trends can ensure that employees return home safely each day.” 

Article written by Seth Skydel


Crane Hot Line is part of the Catalyst Communications Network publication family.