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The 10 Most Dangerous Jobs in America

When people think of dangerous jobs, they may first think about police officers or firefighters. Despite the well-known risks of these professions, neither firefighters nor police officers are working in the most dangerous jobs in the United States. In fact, these two occupations do not even make the list of the top 10 most dangerous jobs in America.

The list, provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, is compiled by calculating the number of deaths per 100,000 workers. Some of the jobs on the list may surprise you.

10. Taxi drivers – Between vehicle accidents and robberies, drivers who make their living driving people around town have a fatal injury rate of 19.7 per 100,000 workers. The median wage is just $25,000 a year.

9. Power-line installers and repairmen (fatal injury rate of 20.7) – Falls, burns and electrocutions can cause serious or fatal injuries.

8. Truck drivers – (fatal injury rate of 24) Truckers have the most fatalities of any other profession on this list, at 759 workers killed in 2011. Fatigue, equipment accidents and highway incidents are the biggest causes of injury and death to truckers.

7. Farmers and ranchers (fatal injury rate of 25.3) – The machinery and equipment farmers and ranchers use can be dangerous. As increasing numbers of ranchers rely on ATVs, the number of serious ATV-related injuries is rising.

6. Iron workers (fatal injury rate of 26.9) – Falls from structures and structural collapses are the leading causes of injuries and fatalities for those in the profession.

5. Roofers (fatal injury rate of 31.8) – In the same vein as iron-workers, falls and being hit with falling items are leading causes of death for roofers. Roofers also work with dangerous compounds and face the threat of electrocution.

4. Sanitation workers (fatal injury rate of 41.2) – Being stuck by oncoming vehicles is a major risk for those who collect refuse for a living. They also face the risk of serious injury from improperly disposed chemicals and pressurized cans and bottles.

3. Airplane pilots (fatal injury rate of 57) – Alaska has the most pilot fatalities in the U.S. Most accidents are caused by pilot error, but new instruments and cameras that allow pilots to accurately gauge weather conditions could help lower the rate.

2. Loggers (fatal injury rate of 102.4) – The fact that these workers are paid to cut down large trees in difficult terrain with dangerous equipment makes logging one of the most dangerous professions. Many injuries are caused by trees that roll down steep and slippery terrain and strike the workers below. Some of the danger has been alleviated with mechanical cutting arms used by loggers in cabs.

1. Fishermen (fatal injury rate of 121.2) – This shocks many people, other than those in the profession. Large fishing nets and motor-operated fishing lines are some of the dangers. According to CNN, fishing is actually safer than it used to be, due to changes to the fishing quota system and better training.

If you have been injured or lost a loved one in the workplace, whether in one of the top 10 most dangerous professions or another kind of job, you may have rights. Contact an experienced attorney who can explain your potential rights to compensation for medical expenses, final expenses and pain and suffering.

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