The North Carolina Department of Labor reported 53 workplace fatalities in the state last year, but the true number may be far higher.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, that number is almost three times higher – 148.
An article from The Huffington Post reports that the North Carolina Department of Labor only reports the workplace deaths that the agency has the authority to investigate, but the BLS report, which is released months after the state’s report and is compiled with the state’s help, includes fatalities that do not fall under North Carolina’s jurisdiction. These include transportation and workplace violence-related deaths.
The state’s own department of labor cannot, by law, investigate fatalities outside its jurisdiction.
While the number of workplace fatalities in North Carolina has declined significantly over the last 10 years, the National Council on Occupational Safety and Health says that the state can do more to prevent future incidents, including imposing harsher fines on repeat offenders.