Most of us don’t have to worry about risk when we go to work every morning. People who work in offices or shops would never say that they have a risky job, and if asked to list risky occupations you’d probably think of jobs like being a stuntman or a deep sea diver. However, the list of occupations where you are most likely to be injured or killed throws up some surprisingly normal jobs.
Farming and Fishing
By far the most dangerous job in the UK in terms of the chance of being injured is being a farmer or a deep sea fisherman. In 2011, 34 people died working on farms in the UK, in accidents involving being crushed by large animals, machinery like tractors or falls from heights. The Health And Safety Executive are trying to address the high number of agricultural injuries by improving training and safety standards on farms. If you choose to go to sea for a living, you are 50 times more likely to die at work than people in other occupations.
The risks involved with working in the building industry are fairly obvious. The job is a combination of working at heights on ladders, using heavy items and potentially dangerous machinery and tools. Over a quarter of all deaths at work take place on building sites, even though construction only employs 5% of UK workers. In addition, construction workers are far more likely to suffer from problems caused by exposure to substances like asbestos in the past.
Underground mining is not as large an employer as it was in times past, but it is still classed as a risky industry to work in. Accidents such as cave ins or underground explosions are often fatal, and exposure to dust can cause long term health problems too. Open cast mining is less risky, but there are still dangers associated with operating heavy machinery.
Working on board an oil rig is a well-paid occupation, partly due to the isolation and partly because of the risks involved. Safety on a rig is paramount, but there is no getting away from the fact that taking oil or gas out of the sea bed has potential for devastating fires and explosions. The weather is another factor which raises the risk, and the remote locations mean that it is not always possible to get workers off the rigs immediately when there is an emergency.