Workplace Injury & Fatality Statistics

Occupational Injury and Fatality Statistics

The Electrical Safety Foundation (ESFI) is a non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to promoting electrical safety at home and in the workplace. Founded in 1994 as a cooperative effort by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), Underwriters Laboratories (UL), and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), ESFI is funded by voluntary contributions from electrical manufacturers, distributors, independent testing laboratories, retailers, insurers, utilities, safety organizations, and trade and labor associations.

To better promote electrical safety in the workplace, ESFI provides statistical data on occupational electrical injuries and fatalities to help decision-makers better allocate safety resources for maximum impact. Our work builds on earlier work by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), providing new information on electrical incidents as it becomes available. The data in our reports cover U.S. occupational electrical accidents, including the total number of electrical injuries and fatalities, the industries and occupations in which they occurred, and the rates of electrical injury and fatality for selected industries.

Statistics 2011 - 2021

The Electrical Safety Foundation (ESFI) uses the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) and Survey of Occupational Injuries (SOII) to distill information specifically pertaining to fatal and nonfatal occupational electrical injuries. Each year the ESFI publishes electrical injury information in tabular and graphical form on our website. The most recent data covers the 30 year period from 1992-2021 but mainly focuses on 2011-2021 data. 

  • There were 126 electrical fatalities in 2020. A 24% decrease over 2019 and the lowest number of electrical fatalities recorded (recording started in 2003)
    • There was a 10% drop in total hours worked in the United States in 2020
  • Contact with / Exposure to electric current accounted for 2.6% of all fatalities in 2020. This is a 19% drop from 2019 and a return to 2017 levels.
  • Electrical fatality rates were 0.09 fatalities per 100,000 workers (22% drop from 2019) in 2020, the rate for all fatalities was 3.5 per 100,000 workers in 2020, slightly above the 2019 rate.
  • The mining industry had the highest rate of fatal electrical injuries (0.8 / 100,000) followed by the construction industry (0.6 / 100,000) in 2020. All industries had 0.1 fatalities per 100,000 workers.
  • In 2020, 5.3% of all electrical incidents were fatal.
  • The number of electrical fatalities varies between ages
    • 7% of electrical fatalities occurred in workers aged 20 – 24
    • 33% of electrical fatalities occurred in workers aged 25 – 34
    • 21% of electrical fatalities occurred in workers aged 34 – 44
    • 18% of electrical fatalities occurred in workers aged 45 – 54
    • 17% of electrical fatalities occurred in workers aged 55 – 64
  • Hispanic or Latino workers accounted for 40% of electrical fatalities. A 24% increase over 2019. Hispanic or Latino workers account for 18% of the workforce.
  • “Constructing, Repairing, Cleaning” accounted for the leading worker activity for electrical fatalities at 64%. “Using or Operating Tools, Machinery” accounted for 22% of electrical fatalities.
  • 33% of all electrical fatalities occurred at a private residence. Industrial places and premises accounted for another 31% of fatalities. Streets and highway accounted for 13%, public buildings accounted for 8%, and farm for 7%
  • Occupations involved in electrical fatalities:
    • Construction and Extraction Occupations: 44%
    • Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Occupations: 20%
    • Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Occupations: 13%
    • Transportations and Material Moving Occupations: 6%
    • Management Occupations: 5%
    • Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Occupations: 3%
  • Private industry accounted for 154 (94%) of the electrical fatalities.