WERU Community Radio

July Quiz Sources and Additional Info

Here are the sources for the answers to the July Common Health Quiz on Workplace Health and Safety along with some additional information about each question.

1. In what workplaces are Maine workers most often reporting first time workplace injuries?

Industry Rank of Injured Workers by Number of Reports

1. Elementary and secondary schools 688
2. Grocery stores 680
3. Department stores 649
4. General medical and surgical hospitals 643
5. Ship building and repairing 618
6. Eating places 585
7. Skilled nursing care facilities 557
8. Residential care 302
9. Single-family house construction 274
10. Individual and family social services 260

Discussion: Though schools produced a large number of workplace injuries, teachers were not among the most likely occupations to report injuries. A large percentage of injuries in schools, as elsewhere, occurred to the cleaning staff who encounter frequent strains, tears and back-related injuries.

Source: Characteristics of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses in Maine 2003, Maine Department of Labor

2. What kinds of occupations are reporting the highest number of workplace injuries in Maine?

Rank Occupation of Injured Workers by Number of Reports

1. Truck drivers 902
2. Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants 877
3. Laborers-except construction 805
4. Janitors and cleaners 595
5. Stock handlers and baggers 382
6. Cashiers 351
7. Construction laborers 346
8. Carpenters 327
9. Kitchen workers, food preparation 323
10. Freight/stock/material handlers, NEC 288
(NEC = Not Elsewhere Classifiable, not fitting available classifications.)

Discussion: These are not necessarily the most hazardous industries in Maine. Some of the most hazardous industries, such as delivery companies, have relatively few workers and thus do not produce large numbers of incidents. Some industries provide greater access to reporting workplace injuries, such as health care workers, where reporting does not require as much lost-time from work.

Source: Characteristics of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses in Maine 2003 Maine Department of Labor

3. How many teens in Maine are hurt on the job badly enough to lose time from work each year?

Answer: 150 – 200 per year.

Workplace injuries occur in greatest numbers to workers between ages 40 and 44. However, workers are far more likely to be injured during their first year at a particular work place. You can learn more about teen worker safety and get a free “Safeteen” Kit online ,

4. In 2003, the latest year for which information is available, what was Maine's rank among the reporting states for the incidence rate of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses?

Maine ranked number 1 of the 45 states and territories reporting in 2003 with 7.7 occurrences per 100 full time workers, edging out Montana with 7.6.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

For more information on steps that can be taken toward creating safer workplaces in Maine, see "10 Steps to a Safe and Healthy Workplace".

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