More than one-third of workplace injuries occur during a worker’s first year on the job, according to a new report from Travelers.

The Travelers 2022 Injury Impact Report analyzed more than 1.5 million workers’ compensation claims over a five-year period. 

Travelers 2022 Employee Injury Report

Regardless of the worker’s age or their experience in the industry, researchers said 35% of injuries occurred during the person’s first year of a new job, resulting in more than 6 million missed days of work. 

Overexertion and slips, trips and falls were among the most common injury claims for first year injuries. 

Aside from those top causes, 14% of first year injury claims stemmed from workers being struck by an object, according to the study. 

Cuts or punctures, caught-in or caught-between hazards, and motor vehicle accidents each accounted for less than 10% of causes. 

Industry-Wide Findings 

“Our data underscores the importance of comprehensive onboarding and training programs for employees, particularly as we continue to navigate the challenges of COVID-19 and see many workers starting new jobs,” Travelers assistant vice president Chris Hayes said. 

“While new employees are among the most vulnerable, many injuries sustained by employees of any tenure can often be prevented if the proper safety measures are in place.”

The restaurant and construction industries were most affected. First-year industries accounted for 53% and 48% of claims, respectively. 

“Many injuries sustained by employees of any tenure can often be prevented if the proper safety measures are in place.”

Travelers’ Chris Hayes

First-year employees in the services industry accounted for 43% of claims, and 39% of claims in the transportation industry. 

Travelers researchers said injuries kept workers across all industries out of work for more than 17 million days over the five year period. 

In alignment with first-year injuries, overexertion was the most common cause of injury, making up 29% of injury claims. 

Slips, trips, and falls made up 23% of injuries, followed by workers being struck by an object, and motor vehicle accidents. 

Costs 

Dislocations, head trauma, and fractures were the most expensive injuries, according to the report.

The average cost of a construction employee’s workers’ compensation claim is more than double the all-industries average. 

Some of the most expensive causes of construction injuries included burns and scalding, and slips, trips, and falls. 

While manufacturing injuries are similar to that of the all-industries trends, the study did find that the average cost of an injury in manufacturing increased approximately 17% over the past five years.