Eight High-Risk Occupations You Should Refrain From


Did you know medical professionals are at a higher risk of catching an infection than a miner? While not every high-paying job guarantees safety, medical professionals are at a higher risk of catching infections or diseases because they work around sick people.

Many occupations in the world are deemed hazardous due to their working condition, the industry, or exposure to contaminants.

These high-risk occupations are usually listed based on the total number of workplace deaths, fatal work injury rate, and the factors contributing to workplace illnesses

So, why do people enter certain professions despite knowing the risks? One of the reasons is financial rewards. For instance, electric powerline installers who make a yearly average of $69,000 are pretty happy putting their lives at risk almost every day.

But if you’re worried about your mental and physical wellbeing, avoid working as,

1. A Construction Laborer/Supervisor:

Construction sites are considered one of the most hazardous working environments. People working in this field are prone to fatal injuries, accidents, and asbestos exposure.

According to BLS data, the construction industry saw an overall 6% increase in fatalities from 2015 to 2016.

On the other hand, the fatal injury rate is 13 per 100,000 workers due to trips, falls, and slips. Construction workers can also develop terminal asbestos-related diseases like mesothelioma due to prolonged exposure to contaminated construction materials like drywall, roof shingles, paint, etc.

If you’ve been exposed to asbestos or showing symptoms, get yourself checked by a doctor, and if your diagnosis is positive, reach out to Sokolove Law to file a lawsuit against your negligent employer for rightful compensation.

2. A Logging Worker:

Did you know that logging has one of the highest rates of fatal injuries? An average of 135.9 out of 100,000 workers were reported as victims of workplace fatalities.

Data also concludes that logging is the most dangerous job in the U.S, with a fatal accident rate almost 33 times higher than any other average job throughout the country.

Since loggers often work in isolated areas with dangerous machinery, most deaths and fatal accidents were reported due to equipment error and contact with objects.

3. A Ground Maintenance Worker:

Ground maintenance work is often physically demanding and requires working in all sorts of weather conditions. The typical tasks performed include maintaining parks, hotels, homes, campuses, and the general landscape.

According to data, the fatal injury rate is 18.6 per 100,000 workers, while over 225 fatal injuries were reported in 2018. Since ground maintenance requires machinery such as lawnmowers, chainsaws, and pruners, the chances of accidents and catastrophic injuries increase significantly.

As an outdoor job, most fatalities were reported due to transportation accidents, being struck by loose objects, falling, and electrocutions.

4. An Industrial Truck And Tractor Operator:

A crane, industrial truck, and tractor operator moves heavy-duty materials and products in places like factories, warehouses, production companies, construction sites, and more.

Even though the equipment is safe, failure to operate with precision causes accidents that sometimes result in death. According to BLS data, workers in material moving and transportation occupations accounted for nearly 47.4% of fatalities.

What’s more, most work fatalities result due to transportation accidents such as collisions.

5. A Mining Machine Operator:

Miners and mining service unit operators are exposed to dangerous contaminants and hazardous conditions throughout their profession. One of the top health risks apart from contaminant exposure for miners are bites, cuts, minor burns, and stings.

It’s hard to ignore that mining is one of the world’s most hazardous occupations, with some of history’s worst disasters taking place in mines.

The likelihood of sustaining life-threatening injuries for mining machine operators is relatively high due to highly combustible materials and unstable tunnels. According to data, mining is of the world’s dirtiest jobs, with an overall unhealthiness score of 53.7.

6. An Electrical Powerline Installer:

It’s a bummer that a high-paying job like electric powerline repairing and installing is on the list of high-risk occupations. Regardless of how well it pays, it still has a fatal injury rate of 19.3 per 100,000 workers.

People in this occupation work around high voltage electric wires to set up and fix telecommunication, fiberoptic, and electric power cables, making them vulnerable to electrocution, falls and slips from high altitudes.  

According to data, about 29 people were killed in 2018, while 1,490 sustained severe injuries.

7. A Roofer:

Roofers are responsible for repairing, maintaining, replacing, and installing roofs on homes and buildings. Since roofers work outdoors and on top of multiple-story buildings, a common cause of injuries is falling, tripping, and slipping, as they generally use ladders and similar equipment to climb.

The fatal injury rate for roofers is 51.5 per 100,000 workers, while a total of 96 deaths and 2,060 injuries were reported in 2018. Besides falling, the grueling and long working hours also contribute to workplace hazards.

8. A Farmer/Rancher:

It may seem joyous to see farmers milking cows and plowing the field on TV, but the reality is quite different. Exposure to pesticides, animal dunk, and the sun puts farmers and other agricultural workers at high risk of infections, bruises, and various diseases.

What’s more, since farming involves heavy machinery like tractors, plows, and cutters, it automatically puts farmers at risk for accidents and fatalities. In fact, the most cause of fatal accidents in farmers is transportation incidents.

According to data, agricultural workers suffered the third-highest total of fatal injuries in 2018 – 257. The fatality rate for farmers, ranchers, and agriculture workers in 2019 remained at 19.4 deaths per 100,000 workers.


When considering which profession to choose, it is essential to know about a specific occupation’s working conditions. Though workplace accidents are common in almost every job, a few fields pose a higher risk of health problems like asthema, inron deficiency, fever, heart disease or getting injured or even death.

Accidents can happen anywhere, anytime, but the key to workplace safety is to know the risks and follow all safety protocols to minimize occupational hazards.


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