Employers need to do more to protect younger workers (ages 15-24) because they often perform jobs that put them at high risk for injury, a new study says.
In a study, the Centres for Disease Prevention and Control researchers analysed national data collected from 1998 to 2007, and found that 800 000 younger workers were injured and more than 500 were killed each year in work-related incidents.
During that 10-year period, 5 719 younger workers died from occupational injuries. The fatality rate for younger workers was 3.6 deaths per 100 000 full-time equivalent workers (FTE), while the fatality rate was 4.4 deaths per 100 000 FTE for workers 25 and older. One FTE equals 2 000 hours worked per year.
What the study found
Between 1998 and 2007, there were an estimated 7.9 million non-fatal injuries to younger workers treated in hospital emergency departments. The non-fatal injury rate among younger workers was 5 emergency department (ED)-treated injuries per 100 FTE, which was about two times higher than the rate among workers 25 and older, the study found.
While the rate of non-fatal injuries for younger workers declined 19 percent between 1998 and 2007, the decrease was not statistically significant, the researchers said.
They called on employers to provide younger workers with the training and protective equipment needed to perform their jobs safely. - (Health Day News, April 2010)