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Occupational injuries and illness in the wholesale and retail trade sector

Wholesale and retail trade sector occupational fatal and nonfatal injuries and illnesses from 2006 to 2016: Implications for intervention

Authors: Putz Anderson V, Schulte PA, Novakovich J, Pfirman D, Bhattacharya A


We analyzed the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) fatal and nonfatal injuries and illness data on U.S. workers in the wholesale and retail trade (WRT) sector from 2006 to 2016. The purpose was to identify elevated fatal and nonfatal injury and illness rates in WRT subsectors.


To assess the WRT health and economic burden, we retrieved multiple BLS data sets for fatal and nonfatal injury and illness data, affecting more than 20 million employees. We examined yearly changes in incidence rates for lost work-time across event and exposure categories.


In 2016, 553 100 injuries and illnesses and 461 fatalities occurred among WRT workers. WRT has a disproportionately 5% larger burden of nonfatal injuries for its size. From 2006 through 2016, wholesale sector fatality rates (4.9/100 000 FTE) exceeded private industry rates (3.8/100 000 FTE). The largest causal fatal factors were transportation in wholesale and violence in retail. Private industry and WRT experienced a decline in nonfatal injuries and illnesses. Wholesale subsectors with elevated nonfatal rates included durable and nondurable goods, recycling, motor parts, lumber, metal and mineral, grocery, and alcohol merchants. Retail subsectors with elevated rates included motor parts dealers, gasoline stations, nonstores, tire dealers, home and garden centers, supermarkets, meat markets, warehouse clubs, pet stores, and fuel dealers.


Through the identification of safety and health risks, researchers and safety practitioners will be able to develop interventions and focus future efforts in advancing the safety and health of WRT employees.

Published 2019. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

This article is a trending article in the field of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. The abstract above was written by the author(s) below. This study was conducted by the author(s) below and published in the journal or book below.

Authors: Putz Anderson V, Schulte PA, Novakovich J, Pfirman D, Bhattacharya A

Journal: American Journal of Industrial Medicine

Link 1: this article @ PubMed

Link2: this article @ Wiley Online Library

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