career

10 of the most dangerous jobs in the US

Your job is your most important investment
By Jean Chatzky

More than 4,500 annual workplace deaths | Digital Vision/Getty Images

Logging workers

Logging workers | Noah Clayton/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 110.9 per 100,000 workers; 78 total

Risk factors: Total logging fatalities in the U.S. increased from 59 to 78 between 2013 and 2014. Dangers abound when you spend most of your days outside with heavy machinery, often in bad weather and occasionally, high altitudes.

Average annual salary: $37,640


Fishers and related fishing workers

Fishers and related fishing workers | Peter Muller/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 80.8 per 100,000 workers; 22 total

Risk factors: Forget the idea of the leisurely fisherman. Fishers and fishing workers have, on average, some of the most dangerous jobs in the country. Malfunctioning gear, bad weather and transportation incidents all add to this profession's fatality rate, the 2nd highest in the country.

Average annual salary: $29,970


Aircraft pilots and flight engineers

Aircraft pilots and flight engineers | James Lauritz/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 64 per 100,000 workers; 82 total

Risk factors: Though pilots are often financially compensated for the inherent dangers and responsibilities of their jobs, no amount of money can change the fact that it's a long way down.

Average annual salary: $119,360 airline, $84,510 commercial


Roofers

Roofers | Huntstock/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 47.4 per 100,000 workers; 83 total

Risk factors: It doesn't take a history in roofing to know the biggest danger is not a sunburn or a hammered finger. Falls are the leading cause of fatal injuries, while other nonfatal injuries, such as fractures, make general construction work among the most injury-prone jobs.

Average annual salary: $40,630

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Refuse and recyclable material collectors

Refuse and recyclable material collectors | kozmoat98/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 35.8 per 100,000 workers; 27 total

Risk factors: Trash and recyclable collectors don't get enough credit for maintaining order in society. Trash collector strikes are never a pretty thing and neither is the high fatality rate.

Average annual salary: $36,370


Farmers, ranchers, agricultural managers

Farmers, ranchers, agricultural managers | Avalon_Studio/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 26.7 per 100,000 workers; 270 total

Risk factors: Working the land may be one of the oldest professions, but new efficient technology has done little to make the job any safer. Long hours and close, consistent contact with heavy machinery and equipment causes the bulk of injuries and fatalities on the job, which is largely represented by transportation incidents.

Average annual salary: $69,880


Structural iron and steel workers

Structural iron and steel workers | sasintipchai/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 25.2 per 100,000 workers; 15 total

Risk factors: Structural iron and steel workers install iron or steel beams and use cranes to lift the beams. Falls, slips and trips give ironworkers one of the highest rates of injuries of all occupations, according to the BLS.

Average annual salary: $54,750


Driver/sales workers and truck drivers

Driver/sales workers and truck drivers | Jetta Productions/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 24.7 per 100,000 workers; 880 total

Risk factors: Truck drivers may get to enjoy seeing the countryside, but long hours on the road take a toll. Even the most vigilant of drivers sometimes breaks down under heavy pressure to produce. Traffic accidents are the major cause of fatalities among this group, according to the BLS.

Average annual salary: $38,030


Electrical power line installers and repairers

Electrical power-line installers and repairers | TerryHealy/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 19.2 per 100,000 workers; 25 total

Risk factors: Despite numerous safety precautions, these workers face potentially deadly conditions on a daily basis. Electrocution and falls account for most of the fatalities in these jobs.

Average annual salary: $65,650


Taxi drivers and chauffeurs

Taxi drivers and chauffeurs | Chris Hondros/Getty Images

Fatality rate: 18 per 100,000 workers; 68 total

Risk factors: Taxi drivers and chauffeurs must stay alert and monitor the conditions of the road at all times. They have to take precautions to ensure their passengers’ safety, especially in heavy traffic or bad weather. This puts them at a higher risk of traffic accidents. In additional, they are at risk of transporting violent passengers or driving in high-crime areas.

Median annual salary: $26,070

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