LOCAL NEWS

COVID tops list of leading causes of work-related fatalities in Washington state in 2021

Apr 27, 2022, 12:14 PM
(Phil Roeder via Flickr)...
(Phil Roeder via Flickr)
(Phil Roeder via Flickr)

COVID-19 was the leading cause of work-related fatalities in Washington state last year, responsible for roughly a quarter of the 106 workers who died on the job in 2021.

All told, 26 employees contracted COVID-19 and died while working in hospitals, prisons, manufacturing facilities, or other workplaces, according to the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

COVID hospitalization rise in King County but ‘remain at stable, low levels,’ says health officer

“Even as we believe that the worst of the pandemic is behind us, we find ourselves looking back on another year where COVID was the leading cause of job-related deaths,” wrote Joel Sacks, L&I director.

“We will not forget those who lost their lives to COVID or other causes. We all need to do everything in our power to ensure every worker goes home safe at the end of the day.”

COVID-19 also claimed the most number of victims in the year prior. Over 2021, the number of COVID-19 deaths increased in 2021, while the total number of workplace fatalities declined by 13 over the previous year, when 119 workers died on the job.

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COVID tops list of leading causes of work-related fatalities in Washington state in 2021