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New Jersey workers in many occupations face deadly hazards

Figures from 2014 about fatal on-the-job accidents have been released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Its final figures for its Census of Fatal Occupation Injuries placed logging highest on the list of deadly occupations. Workers in the fishing industry experienced the second highest rate of fatal workplace incidents with 80.8 workers per 100,000 dying in 2014.

When loggers and fishers suffer injuries, they face the extra hazard of being in a remote location. A chief forester and president of one lumber company said that working in a wilderness area limited access to rescue personnel and medical care.

Urban settings present workplace hazards as well. Aircraft pilots and roofers occupied the third and fourth positions on the bureau's rankings. Pilots and aircraft engineers died at the rate of 64 per 100,000. Fatal accidents struck down 47.4 roofers per 100,000. When all industries are considered together, the average rate of fatalities among workers totaled 3.4 out of 100,000. This represented a small increase from the average of 3.3 tallied in 2013.

A person who dies on the job should have a workers' compensation insurance policy in place to compensate the surviving family with a death benefit. The employer is obligated to maintain this insurance, but a survivor might have difficulty obtaining information about it. Seeking out the support of an attorney might enable a survivor to learn about death benefits. An attorney could prepare the paperwork to file a claim and then follow up with the insurance company. If the insurance company resists paying a settlement, then an attorney could take the case to court and present evidence that a workplace accident led to the death.

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