BLS: Foreign-Born Latino Dies of Work-Related Injury Every 17 Hours

By Brittany M. Hughes | September 11, 2014 | 2:18pm EDT

(AP Photo/James Macpherson)

( - On average, one foreign-born Hispanic or Latino worker dies from a work-related injury in the United States every 17 hours, according data released Thursday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Hispanic and Latino workers in the United States also had a higher rate of fatal work injuries in 2013 than the national rate, according to BLS.

The BLS survey on work-related injuries does not address the immigration status of foreign-born workers, who can include naturalized citizens, legal permanent residents, foreign nationals on work visas, and illegal aliens.

“Fatal work injuries among Hispanic or Latino workers were higher in 2013, rising 7 percent,” said BLS. ”The 797 Hispanic or Latino worker deaths in 2013 constituted the highest total since 2008. Fatal work injuries were lower among all other major racial/ethnic groups.”

“The fatal injury rate for Hispanic or Latino workers was 3.8 per 100,000 FTE [full-time equivalent] workers, which was higher than the national rate of 3.2 per 100,000 FTE workers,” said BLS.

Of the 797 Hispanic or Latino workers who died from work injuries in 2013, 527—or 66 percent--were foreign born.

“Overall,” said BLS, “there were 845 fatal work injuries involving foreign-born workers in 2013, of which the greatest share (352 or 42 percent) was born in Mexico.”

According to Matt Gunter, an BLS economist, the legal statuses of foreign-born workers killed are not determined by the Bureau and are not included in the report.

"We don't check immigration status as part of our notational process," Gunter said, adding the data in the report is compiled from a variety of government and non-government records that usually don't specify a worker's immigration status.

There were 365 days in 2013 and 8760 hours. The 527 foreign-born Latino workers who died from work injuries in 2013 amounted to one every 16.6 hours.

Of the 797 Hispanic or Latino workers who died from work injuries in 2013, 8 percent died from homicides, 14 percent died after being struck by an object or equipment, 17 percent died as the result of a traffic incident, and 22 percent died from falling, slipping or tripping.

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