Statistics on Wildlife Interactions
Insects, animals, snakes and other mobile creatures can create a variety of jobsite hazards to workers. Below are a few statistics on the hazards of working around wildlife.
- The Insurance Information Institute reports that over 1 .6 million deer-vehicle collisions occur each year, causing vehicle damage, injuries, and even fatalities. The estimated annual cost of deer-vehicle collisions is $4.6 billion;
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 300,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme disease from tick bites in the United States each year;
- According to the University of Florida Wildlife Department, approximately 7,000 to 8,000 individuals are bitten by poisonous snakes in the United States each year;
- According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), thousands of people are stung by insects each year, and as many as 90–100 people in the United States die from a resulting allergic reactions; and,
- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mosquitos are the deadliest creatures on earth. Transfer of harmful microorganisms during a mosquito bite kills hundreds of thousands of people around the world each year.
Mitigate the Hazards of Wildlife
Different wildlife poses different concerns when working outdoors. It is important to understand the risks and find ways to diminish these risks when working outside. Some ways to mitigate the hazards of wildlife include:
- Using insect repellant;
- Checking yourself at the end of the day for ticks;
- Avoid heavily vegetated areas where snakes and other wildlife may be hiding; and
- Do not approach or provoke wild animals. Avoid contact with wild animals, altogether.
The jobsite hazards associated with working around wildlife are not limited to disease-carrying insects or predators, they involve all types of wildlife. By understanding the potential consequences of contact with wildlife, you can minimize risk on the jobsite.