The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the number of occupational fatalities in Wyoming rose from 32 in 2019 to 35 in 2020 (an increase of three deaths, or 9.4%. Variations in fatalities from year to year are, to some extent, the result of the random nature of work-related accidents. Furthermore, there is not always a direct relationship between workplace fatalities and workplace safety. For example, suicides and homicides that occur in the workplace are included as occupational fatalities. Workplace fatalities are counted in the state where the injury occurred, not necessarily the state of residence or the state of death.
In 2020, 13 deaths occurred in natural resources & mining (or 37.1% of all deaths). Nine deaths were reported in agriculture, forestry, fishing, & hunting (25.7%) and nine deaths occurred in transportation & warehousing (25.7%). There were four deaths in mining, quarrying, & oil & gas extraction (11.4%). Construction and retail trade each had three deaths (8.6%).
Across all industries, more than half of 2020 workplace deaths (57.1%) were the result of transportation incidents. Transportation incidents include highway crashes, pedestrian vehicular incidents, aircraft incidents, and water vehicle incidents.
The fatality counts featured in this release are compiled by the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) program (a joint effort of Research & Planning and the Bureau of Labor Statistics) and may not match those from other programs, such as data published by Wyoming’s State Occupational Epidemiologist. One major reason for differences is that CFOI is a national program with data being collected for all 50 states. States routinely share information in order to obtain the most complete counts of workplace fatalities. The State Occupational Epidemiologist Program and the CFOI program complement each other with their two different goals: the State-run program allows for a more detailed look at workplace deaths, while the CFOI program allows for the collection of national data across states. Reports from the State Occupational Epidemiologist are available here.
For official definitions used in the CFOI program, please visit here.