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This Is the Most Dangerous State to Work, Data Shows

Workers in this state report nearly 80 injuries per 100,000 people, according to new research.

Whether you're a dentist or a construction worker, no workplace is completely without risk of injury on the job. But if you work in certain states across the U.S., your risks may be substantially higher or lower compared to your counterparts in other regions. A new study, conducted by accident injury law firm Dolman Law, reveals which states are the absolute most dangerous nationwide for injuries sustained while on the clock.

To figure out which state had the highest rate over the last five years, the researchers analyzed the number of reported work-related injuries from 2016 to 2021. Overall, the U.S. had 64,842 work-related injuries reported in the last five years, averaging 12,968 every year. The firm's results showed that Indiana is the safest state for workers, after recording only 27 work-related injuries between 2016 and 2021—this translates to 0.4 injuries per 100,000 people in the relatively safe state when it comes to workplace harm.

But many states have far more injuries reported by the population—up to nearly double the rate in Indiana—according to the data. Read on for the most dangerous states to work in.

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suburb in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Tupungato / Shutterstock

With a total number of 5,190 work-related injuries over a population of 12,807,060, that works out to 40.52 injuries per 100,000 people in Pennsylvania.


Jackson, Mississippi, USA cityscape at dusk.

Workers in Mississippi reported 1,259 injuries over the five-year period studied. With a population of 2,963,914, that figure corresponds to a workplace injury rate of 42.48 people in the state.


Hudson, Ohio
Kenneth Sponsler /

Ohio reported 5,015 workplace injuries over the five-year period between 2016 and 2021. With a state population of 11,689,442, this number translates to an injury rate of 42.90 per 100,000.

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Alabama reported 2,133 injuries during the five-year period. With a population of 4,887,871, this translates to a reported injury rate of 43.64 per 100,000.


Aerial View of Downtown Hutchinson, Kansas in Summer

Kansas reported 1,318 injuries over the five-year period. With a population of 2,911,505, this translates to a reported injury rate of 45.27 per 100,000.


The skyline of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Taking the middle of the top 10 list, Wisconsin came in fifth with 2,681 work-related injuries in five years. The state has a population of 5,813,568, so that translates to 46.12 injuries per 100,000 people.

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The skyline of Little Rock, Arkansas at dawn

Arkansas came in fourth on the list with 1,391 reported injuries since 2016, which is a rate of 46.15 per 100,000 people in the state.

South Dakota

cityscape photo of shops, trees along mountains, and a road in Deadwood City, South Dakota

South Dakota takes the No. 3 spot on the list, with 435 workplace injuries reported between 2016 and 2021. This figure translates to 49.31 work-related injuries per 100,000 people in the state.


Downtown Omaha Nebraska Drone Photo

With more than 1,000 injuries in the last five years, Nebraska comes in second on the list. The state has a population of 1,929,268, which translates to 54.37 injuries per 100,000 people.

North Dakota

cityscape photo of downtown Grand Forks, North Dakota

With a population of just 760,077, North Dakota is the most dangerous state to be a worker across the nation, according to the research. The state had the most reported work-related injuries, with a total of 607 since 2016, which equates to a whopping 79.86 injuries per 100,000 people (nearly double the rate in Indiana).

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Alesandra Dubin
Alesandra Dubin is a lifestyle editor and writer based in Los Angeles. Read more
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