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Tennessee agencies confront on-the-job injuries in high-risk occupations

Every occupation has its own set of hazards. However, some jobs are far more dangerous than others. For men and women engaged in a hazardous occupation knowing the ins and outs of workplace safety, as well as workers' compensation, is simply a part of the job.

Regulators in Tennessee are taking measures to ensure that employees working in hazardous conditions are armed with the most up-to-date safety information and training possible. The goals of the effort are to reduce on-the-job injuries in Tennessee and to lower the number of workers' compensation claims that are filed each year.

Some of the most dangerous occupations on record include logging, trucking, construction and farming. In a recent survey released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 692 fatalities took place on the job between years of 2005 and 2009 in the state of Tennessee, the majority of which occurred in the high risk category. Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of Tennessee regulators to improve job safety, the five aforementioned career paths remain among the most hazardous for our state's workers.

It appears that changes in equipment and technology could eliminate some of the dangers commonly associated with these professions. As a result, the instance of on-the-job injury and workers' compensation claims within these fields may fluctuate, but are not likely to significantly improve.

Individuals who are injured on the job typically suffer both monetary and physical damages. In some cases, the emotional and mental strain that comes with a workplace injury may be harder to deal with than the physical recovery. In these cases, worker's compensation may provide the necessary means for maintaining an acceptable standard of living.

Source: The Tennessean, "Officials work for better safety on TN's most dangerous jobs," Duane Marsteller, 19 June 2011

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