Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Hazards of Lobster Fishing

Big Lobster Fishing, great lobster

Lobster fishing might seem to be a safe profession. But it is not. For example, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) says that “from 1993 to 1997, the occupational fatality rate for lobstermen in Maine was 14 per 100,000 licensed lobstermen, more than 2.5 times the national average (4.8 per 100,000 workers) for all industries.”

According to NIOSH, a U.S. Coast Guard investigation found that “lobstermen often become entangled in loose line on deck, are pulled overboard by the traps, and drown when they cannot free themselves from the line or are unable to reboard the vessel.” In a survey of 103 lobster fishermen, conducted from 1999 to 2000, nearly 3 out of 4 reported that at some point they had become entangled by trap line, although not all  ere pulled overboard. Safety measures have been recommended so that lobster  ishermen could either have the tools to cut themselves free or prevent entanglement in the first place.


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