Most dangerous jobs in the UK

Agriculture is currently the UK's deadliest industry to work in.

Working provides people with vital income to cover their daily expenses, food and housing costs, and the majority of Brits who are based in offices have an extremely safe working environment. This isn’t the case for everyone though, and despite very strict workplace safety requirements, some industries are naturally riskier and involve employees doing dangerous jobs.

Every company needs to provide employers’ liability insurance for their employees and workers may also choose to pay for private health insurance as well. Insurance can help to protect an employee if they get injured or if they’re liable for damages as a result of a workplace accident.

Quick stats

  • In the UK, 581,000 workers sustained a non-fatal injury at work in 2018/2019.
  • The most dangerous job in the UK is an agriculture worker, with 32 deaths in this occupation during 2018/2019, closely followed by a construction worker, with 30 deaths.
  • The profession that sees the most injuries of any sector is health and social care.
  • The most dangerous jobs for men during the coronavirus pandemic are taxi drivers and chauffeurs. They have the highest death rate from the coronavirus, at 36.4 per 100,000.
  • For women, the most dangerous job during the coronavirus pandemic is a social care worker, with a death rate of 9.6 per 100,000. However, this death rate is almost 4 times lower than that of male taxi drivers and chauffeurs.

UK’s most dangerous industries in 2018/2019

Dangerous job stats for 2018/2019

  • 1.4 million people in the UK suffered from a work-related illness.
  • 147 workers were killed at work, compared to 137 deaths in 2016/2017.
  • 581,000 people sustained an injury at work.
  • 28.2 million working days were lost due to work-related illness and injuries.
  • £15 billion was the estimated cost of injuries and ill health resulting from working conditions.

Danger money

Working in a mine or out at sea might not seem very safe, but those who work in dangerous industries are generally compensated for the risks they take.

Those working as commercial divers can earn up to £60,000 per year, over double the average UK salary (£29,588 per year). If you ever dreamt about a life at sea, maybe you’d be interested in becoming an offshore oil platform worker, and take home £50,000 per year.

Job title Salary per year
Commercial Diver £60,000 per year
Offshore Oil Platform Worker £50,000 per year
Mining Construction Worker £50,000 per year
Large Animal Vet £44,000 per year
Civil Engineer £39,000 per year
Security Work £500 per day

The jobs most affected by coronavirus

We’re all affected by the pandemic, but here are the job roles that have a higher risk of catching the virus than any other. The worst job for men during the coronavirus pandemic are taxi drivers and chauffeurs. They have the highest death rate from the coronavirus, 36.4 per 100,000. The next most dangerous profession is also related to driving – 26.4 of every 100,000 bus and coach drivers have died as a result of coronavirus.


Occupation Rate
Taxi drivers and chauffeurs 36.4
Bus and coach drivers 26.4
Low skilled elementary occupations 21.4
Caring, leisure and other service occupations 17.9
Process, plant and machine operatives 15.5
Sales and customer service occupations 14.3
Administrative and secretarial occupations 13.9
Skilled trades occupations 11.7
Managers, directors and senior officials 8.4
Associate professional and technical occupations 7.5
Professional occupations 5.6

Women appear to be less likely to die at work as a result of coronavirus than men. The most dangerous job for women during the corona crisis is a social care worker, with a death rate of 9.6 per 100,000. This is followed by the care and leisure industry, where 7.5 workers out of every 100,000 have died.


Occupation Rate
Social care workers 9.6
Caring, leisure and other service occupations 7.5
Low skilled elementary occupations 6.1
Sales and customer service occupations 5.4
Health care workers 4.8
Professional occupations 4.2
Managers, directors and senior officials 4.0
Administrative and secretarial occupations 3.8
Associate professional and technical occupations 3.4

For all media enquiries, please contact

Matt Mckenna
UK communications manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806


  • ONS
  • Statista
  • HSE
  • Employment for All

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