America's Most Dangerous Occupations, Day Five

Continuing my entries on the nation's riskiest occupations is the discussion of the fifth most perilous job: ironworkers.

Though falls are the most common cause of death for ironworkers, they also risk injuries from steel beam or reinforced concrete wall collapses, "struck-by" injuries from falling or swinging objects, and contact with live electrical lines. Because new work rules require vertical beams to be anchored with four bolts instead of two, beams are less likely to work loose and crash, which has greatly enhanced the safety of the occupation. Pennsylvania has an estimated number of iron and steel workers of 1,850, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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