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Examples and Statistics

In 1996, there were 17.8 injuries and illnesses for every 100 full-time workers in poultry slaughtering and processing (SIC 2015).

In 1996, workers in the poultry slaughtering and processing industry suffered 9.5 injuries and illnesses (for every 100 full-time workers) that caused lost workdays. U.S. workers as a whole experienced only 3.4 such injuries and illnesses for every 100 full-time workers. [PPT*

OSHA Survey

In 1997, OSHA visited 51 randomly selected poultry processing plants to determine: [PPT*]
  • what are the most common types of workplace injuries and illnesses in this industry, and
  • what hazards and conditions contribute to these injuries and illnesses.
As a part of this survey, OSHA determined that for the 51 sites visited, the lost workday injury and illness rates averaged:
  • 1995: 11.03
  • 1996: 10.52
  • 1997 (through September only): 10.36
Most Common Injuries and Illnesses:

More than 75% of the worker injuries and illnesses identified at these plants for the 3 years covered by this OSHA survey were caused by:
  • back and repetitive motion injuries and illnesses,
  • cuts or lacerations,
  • struck by or against an object, and
  • slips, trips, or falls.
Examples and Statistics:
  • 40% of the injuries and illnesses were back injuries (acute and chronic),
  • 10% were cumulative trauma disorders due to repetitive motion,
  • 15% were contusions and fractures, and
  • 10% were cuts and lacerations.
Contributory Hazards: Workplace hazards found by the survey to contribute to these injuries and illnesses were:
  • slippery floors from water and poultry fat/grease (back injuries, strains, sprains);
  • narrow walkways and crowded workspaces hindering movement (strains, sprains, contusions, back injuries, struck by or against);
  • manually moving objects (strains, sprains, back injuries, struck by or against);
  • use of knives in crowded work areas (lacerations and cuts); and
  • repetitive motions in the cutting operations that cause cumulative trauma disorders (tendinitis, carpal tunnel disorders).
View OSHA Poultry Survey Form

Accessibility Assistance: Contact the OSHA Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at 202-693-2300 for assistance accessing PPT materials.

*These files are provided for downloading.

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