General Information about Nonfatal Injuries and Illnesses

Since the early 1970s, Alaska has conducted the annual Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). A statistical sample of Alaska’s private firms, as well as state and local government agencies, are selected each year to participate in the survey. Not included in the survey are the self-employed, farms with fewer than 11 employees, private households, and federal agencies.

BLS publishes the data in press releases, summaries, and an annual bulletin. Policy makers use the estimates data to define the nature and scope of job safety and health problems; researchers use the estimates data to study ways to solve these problems.

The survey data are broken up into two categories, summary data and case and demographic data. Summary data provide information annually on the number and frequency of nonfatal injuries and illnesses occurring in the workplace. These data include all nonfatal injuries and illnesses regardless of whether or not “days away from work” were incurred. Summary data present data in a broader, industry-wide scope. Whereas, case and demographic data report on the case characteristics and demographics for the more serious incidents, those that require time away from work. This data break injuries into their basic components: nature, part, source, event, worker demographics, etc.