Industry Injuries: Police and Correctional Officers

As we continue through our industry injury series, the importance of the roles police and correctional officers play in society shouldn't go unnoticed. Both industries place individuals in dangerous situations that pose high risks for getting hurt on the job. If you work in the police or correctional officer field and you sustain an injury, you may have costly medical expenses that leave you unable to return to work. In the event of a tragic death, family members are left behind to face the financial and emotional challenges.


According to the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund, below are the average deaths, assaults and assaults per year suffered by police officers from 2008-2017:

Deaths: 151
Assaults: 49,409
Assaults per year: 13,424

The numbers speak for themselves. Shoulder injuries, for example, are common - not just from takedowns during arrests, but also from self-defense tactical training.  Foot problems, like plantar fasciitis, sometimes show up after years of being on foot patrol. Lower back and hip issues are exacerbated or even caused by the weight of gun belts and vests worn for ten hours a day. Fatal car accidents can occur during high-speed chases, while and hand injuries from cuffing suspects, twisted ankles and knees from foot chases...the list goes on.


In the U.S., approximately half a million correctional officers are responsible for supervising more than two million inmates. These officers work in prisons that house some of the most dangerous people in society - murderers, drug dealers, gang members and more. They regularly interact with them, enter their cells, transport them from point A to point B and break up their fights. This, alone, puts them in line to be attacked.

Of all U.S. workers, correctional officers have one of the highest rates of nonfatal, work-related injuries.1 In 2011, correctional officers experienced 544 work-related injuries or illnesses per 10,000 full-time employees (FTEs), which were serious enough to require that they missed a day of work.

According to the National Library of Medicine, correctional officers are most commonly treated for sprains and strains (30%) and contusions and abrasions (28%). Sprains and strains were most often related to overexertion and body reaction that occurred while responding to inmate-related incidents such as restraining an inmate or breaking up a fight.

Let Dugan & Associates Help You!

If you or someone you love works in law enforcement or as a correctional officer, the team at Dugan & Associates is ready to look at your case. Our team of experienced workplace injury lawyers will make sure you receive the maximum monetary compensation available to you. Give us a call at 412-353-3572 or contact us online today for your free consultation.

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