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Fifty-nine pilots died of a fatal workplace injury in 2017

October 03, 2019

In 2017, there were 59 fatal occupational injuries among aircraft pilots and flight engineers. Pilots’ primary responsibility is to provide scheduled air transportation of passengers or cargo, or nonscheduled routes on aircraft or helicopters. Pilots face considerable risks in their jobs, which resulted in a fatal injury rate of 48.6 cases per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers in 2017. The fatal injury rate among all occupations nationally in 2017 was 3.5.

 Rate of fatal injuries to pilots per 100,000 full-time workers, 2012–17



All occupations


54.3 3.4


50.6 3.3


64.0 3.4


40.4 3.4


55.5 3.6


48.6 3.5

Aircraft incidents were the sole event or exposure leading to workplace fatalities among aircraft pilots and flight engineers, with vehicular and transportation operations accounting for the worker’s activity in all recorded cases. Most fatal workplace injuries occurred in the private sector, with 22 pilots killed while working in the transportation and warehousing industry, and 20 pilots fatally injured in education and health services industries (including flight training and air ambulance services).

These data are from the Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities program and include workers in the private sector and government.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Fifty-nine pilots died of a fatal workplace injury in 2017 at (visited November 30, 2022).