Many senior citizens in New Jersey continue working well past retirement age. According to the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of workers in the U.S. that are over the age of 55 more than doubled between 1992 and 2017. During the same period, however, the number of fatal work injuries among older workers also increased.

When looking at all age groups, the BLS found that fatal workplace injuries went down by 17 percent in the period studied. At the same time, there was a 56 percent increase in workplace fatalities among workers over the age of 55. In 2017, fatalities among older workers reached an all-time high after surpassing the previous all-time high in 2016.

According to the BLS data, older workers in the farming and truck driving industries have the highest number of fatal work-related injuries. In the farming industry, older workers are much more likely to be killed on the job than younger workers. The BLS found that the majority of fatal workplace accidents among older workers involved a tractor, and many of the other fatal accidents involved agricultural machinery. While there are a high number of fatal accidents in the trucking industry, there was not a noticeable difference between older and younger workers’ fatality rates.

When a worker of any age is killed on the job, the worker’s family members have the right to claim workers’ compensation benefits on their behalf. An attorney may be able to help the family of a deceased worker to claim compensation through workers’ compensation insurance and pursue a wrongful death claim against any liable parties.