MONEY Earnings

The 10 Most Dangerous Jobs and How Much They Pay

Delivery van driver
Two in five workplace deaths are transportation related. Kali Nine LLC—Getty Images

Few of the occupations that put workers at high risk are especially lucrative.

Loggers. Commercial fishermen. Firefighters. It’s not surprising that these occupations top the list of the most dangerous jobs.

But when research engine FindTheBest set out to identify how well high-risk jobs pay, one occupation that doesn’t involve such extreme working conditions landed on the list: truck drivers and delivery drivers. The reason: Transportation-related incidents are the number one cause of on-the-job fatalities across all job categories, accounting for 40% of deaths, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics.

People who spend long days behind the wheel, such as workers making regular store deliveries or restaurant take-out drivers, are at a higher risk of having an accident. Truck drivers and a group the BLS calls driver/sales workers together rank as the ninth most dangerous profession. Two other transportation-related jobs also landed relatively high on the list: Taxi drivers and chauffeurs come in at No. 16.

As for how much these dangerous occupations pay, FindTheBest found that few risky jobs will make you rich. To see how much workers in these professions earn, FindTheBest combined data from the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) with median wages from the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook and Occupational Employment Statistics Report.

According to the BLS Occupational Handbook, the median wage for all professions in 2012 was $34,750. According to FindTheBest’s analysis, only four of the top-10 high-risk jobs pay at least $10,000 above that; three pay about the median and three pay less.

The most well-compensated workers in the top 10 are aircraft pilots and flight engineers, who make a median salary of $129,600 a year. Many pilots fly routine routes for commercial airlines, while others fulfill more dangerous roles, such as assisting firefighters, transporting freight to remote areas, and performing search and rescue operations. A higher number of those pilots, who also earn less, die on the job.

None of the remaining professions pay nearly as well as being a pilot, but agricultural managers, electrical power-line installers and repairers, and steel workers all make a median wage that’s more than $10,000 above the median for all professions.

Farmers and agricultural managers face all sorts of risks, from charging animals, to tractor accidents and even asphyxiation from falling into bins of grain. Electrical power-line installers and steel workers operate at extreme heights, which puts them at risk of falling and slipping—the third most common reason for death in 2013.

The remaining six professions on the list pay only slightly above the overall median wage, or even below it.

Roofers, waste collectors, and construction laborers make a median salary of about $35,000, yet these workers face a risk of death that’s five to 12 times greater than the overall U.S. rate of 3.4 fatal injuries per 100,000 workers.

Logging workers, fishers, and sales and truck drivers earn less than the median wage but face a fatality rate between 6.5 and 37.5 times higher than the risk for all jobs. The lowest paid in the top ten: sales delivery drivers, who earn just $27,530 a year.

Chainsaw accidents and falling logs and branches are among the main dangers loggers—the number one most dangerous job in 2012—face. Fishermen encounter many hazards as well, such as slippery decks, swinging equipment, and capsizing boats.

But there has been improvement in these grim numbers. The fatality total in 2012 (4,628) was the second lowest since the CFOI was first conducted in 1992 and a slight improvement from 2011. Some new technologies such as non-rollover tractors for farmers, foot straps for roofers, and improved safety training overall have helped reduce fatality rates.

Here are details on fatality rates and wages for the ten most dangerous professions. To see data for all professions, click on the link at the bottom of the table.

 

Read next: What Can You Learn From the Toughest Leadership Job on Earth?

TIME

Quiz: How Does Your City Affect Your Happiness?

Answer these 13 questions and find out

Happy CityIn his book Happy City, Charles Montgomery offers evidence that where you live has a powerful effect on how you feel. From our commutes to our neighbors and our daily routines, where we choose to live can influence our feelings in ways most of us never imagine.

mcgill_logoThe following quiz will ask you 13 questions about your life. After answering each one, you’ll see how thousands of others have answered the same question. This survey will help us reveal new insights about the relationship between cities and happiness. All responses are completely anonymous.

The quiz was developed by Montgomery, Chris Barrington-Leigh of McGill University, along with TIME.

The data for average happiness scores will update as more readers take the survey. Current results based on 3,302 respondents. Data may also be used for a future study by Barrington-Leigh on happiness across the United States.

Read next: What Your Zip Code Says About You

TIME Careers & Workplace

The Exact Perfect Amount of Time to Take a Break, According to Data

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Sam Diephuis—Getty Images/Blend Images RM

The right amount of mental detachment now and again can actually make you much more productive

A lot of productivity gurus advise taking breaks during the day to keep from burning out. But how often should you take breaks, and how long should they be? That’s not as easy an answer.

Until now.

Productivity app DeskTime lets employers see if their people are working or goofing around on Facebook or Buzzfeed. It sifted through the computer activity data of its 5.5 million daily logs to come up with the 10% most productive workers, then it took a peek at how they spend their time during the day.

The result: The most productive workers engage in job-related tasks for 52 minutes, then take a 17-minute break. That 15-to-20-minute window is productivity’s “golden hour” (or quarter-hour, as the case may be). It’s long enough for your brain to disengage and leave you feeling refreshed, but not so long that you lose focus and derail momentum on what you were doing.

The key to getting the most out of those breaks is to throw yourself into your work during those 52-minute increments, since you know there’s a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel.

“The notion that whatever you do, you do it full-out,” DeskTime says on its blog. “During the 52 minutes of work, you’re dedicated to accomplishing tasks, getting things done, making progress. Whereas during the 17 minutes of break, you’re completely removed from the work you’re doing – you’re entirely resting.”

Giving your brain some down time to avoid losing focus and making sloppy mistakes that slow you down has proven benefits. Wharton School doctoral student Hengchen Dai, discussing her new research, tells the Harvard Business Review that breaks make people more diligent. “The more relaxed and disengaged from work people feel during a break, the more likely they will be to benefit from taking time off,” she says.

In a study of doctors, Dai and her co-authors found that those at the end of their shifts washed their hands less frequently — a mistake that could put themselves and patients at risk.

So don’t feel guilty about taking a walk around the block or checking your fantasy football stats. As long as you jump back into work with both feet, that physical and mental disengagement makes you more productive.

TIME

18 Ways to Send the Right Message With Body Language

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Klaus Vedfelt—Getty Images

Use nonverbal communication to your advantage

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This post is in partnership with Inc., which offers useful advice, resources and insights to entrepreneurs and business owners. The article below was originally published at Inc.com.

In addition, it’s especially important to make a good first impression. Why? Because within the first few minutes of meeting someone, we are already making decisions about what the other person’s intentions are, and whether or not the person is credible and someone we want to do business with.

Therefore, the way you present yourself–especially the way you communicate nonverbally in those first few crucial minutes after meeting someone new–could make or break what could potentially be a very important business relationship.

Here are 18 ways you can use your body language to communicate your credibility and intentions in a way that will set you up for success every time.

Positive body

1. Begin with your posture–back straight but not rigid, and shoulders relaxed so you don’t look too uptight.

2. Align your body with the person you’re talking to–this shows you’re engaged.

3. Keep your legs apart a bit instead of crossed–this demonstrates that you’re relaxed, and research shows that you retain more information when you keep your legs uncrossed.

4. Lean in a bit–this shows focus and that you really are listening.

5. Mirror the body language you are observing, showing you are in agreement and that you like–or are sincerely trying to like–the person you are with.

Positive arms and hands

6. Keep your arms relaxed at your sides, showing you are open to what someone else is communicating, and as with your legs, keep your arms uncrossed in order to absorb more of what’s going on.

7. Use your hands to gesture when you speak–this improves your credibility with the listener. In addition, there is evidence that gesturing with your hands while speaking improves your thinking processes.

8. Always remember to greet others with a firm handshake–but not too firm. A firm handshake is probably one of the most important body language moves, because it sets the tone for the entire conversation. Who wants to shake hands and then have a conversation with a wet noodle?

9. Be aware of different cultural greetings and closures prior to your meeting.

Positive head

10. With appropriate nods and genuine smiles, you are showing the speaker that you understand, agree, and are listening to his or her opinions.

11. Laughter is always a great way to lighten the mood when used appropriately, and once again, it shows you’re listening.

12. Keep good eye contact by looking the person in the eye when he or she is communicating. Keep eye contact going when you speak, because this shows you are interested in the conversation. Watch your eye contact, though–if you don’t take breaks to contemplate your next answer, your eye contact could be viewed as staring (translation: aggressive or creepy).

13. Beware of blinking too much. Rapid blinking could communicate that you are feeling uncomfortable with the current conversation.

14. Mirror the other person’s facial expressions, because once again, this demonstrates that you are in agreement and like–or are making an effort to like–the other person.

15. Monitor your voice. Keep it low, and don’t end every sentence as if it’s a question. Take a deep breath and speak slowly and clearly.

The little extras

16. During your meeting, take notes. This will demonstrate that you are engaged and care about what the other person is saying, but remember to make eye contact regularly so the speaker knows you’re still with him or her.

17. Watch the body language of others, as they may be communicating to you through their body language that they would like to conclude the meeting. People are much more likely to engage you in future conversations if you observe and act on their body language cues.

18. End the meeting with a firm handshake and eye contact, showing you enjoyed your time and hope to meet again.

TIME Saving & Spending

Here’s Exactly How You Waste $1,700 Every Year

Money in jeans pocket
Image Source—Getty Images

If you do this, you might as well be lighting a pile of money on fire

Traffic congestion isn’t just a frustrating part of commuter life; it’s expensive. A new report finds that every household with a car-commuting member loses $1,700 a year in time and gas burned thanks to bumper-to-bumper traffic.

If you think that’s bad, it’s going to get worse: Researchers predict that annual cost will soar to $2,300 by 2030. Between now and then, the total tab adds up to $2.8 trillion.

The Centre for Economics and Business Research found that last year alone, wasted time and gas from sitting in traffic cost us $78 billion, and it warns that we’ll face greater congestion in the future because our population is growing and we’ll buy more cars, adding to the rush-hour standstill. (The study was commissioned by INRIX, a company that makes traffic-navigation software.)

Researchers say traffic jams also generate indirect costs. The group estimates that $45 billion worth of costs incurred by freight stuck in traffic gets passed along to consumers, and the carbon from the gas we burn has an annual cost of $300 million.

An expanding population and economy are the main culprits, says INRIX CEO and cofounder Bryan Mistele. More people and a higher GDP make car ownership more ubiquitous and more affordable.

And while you might think recent decreases in the price of gas might help, researchers say this actually hurts our traffic prospects in the long run: Cheaper gas means people are more willing to plunk down the money for a car and more likely to get behind the wheel, rather than considering alternatives like consolidating trips or carpooling. This, of course, means more vehicles clogging our roads at any given time.

According to the American Automobile Association, idling burns about a gallon of gas an hour even if you don’t go anywhere. So, what can the average commuter do?

Unfortunately, the answer for many right now is “not much.” Mistele suggests that in-car software or smartphone apps can help by giving drivers real-time congestion information and suggesting alternate routes. (That’s true, but sometimes even an alternate route will leave you staring at brake lights as the clock ticks.) Workarounds like alternative work hours are telecommuting can help, if you’re one of the lucky few who has that kind of job flexibility, but many of us don’t. Alternatives like public transportation, walking or biking will work for some, but will be inconvenient for anybody trying to haul a little league team or a warehouse club-sized package of paper towels across town.

Along with trying to consolidate trips and carpooling, the AAA recommends resisting the temptation to speed up as soon as there’s a bit of a break, then jamming on your brakes again a minute later. “It takes much more fuel to get a vehicle moving than it does to keep it moving,” the group advises, so try to keep a slow and steady pace if you can. Get the junk out of your trunk and remove unused third-row seating to lighten your load and improve your mileage.

TIME Careers & Workplace

There’s No Such Thing as Work-Life Balance

Group of office workers in a boardroom presentation
Chris Ryan—Getty Images/OJO Images RF

A mixture of the two creates value in a way that neither does on its own

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This post is in partnership with Fortune, which offers the latest business and finance news. Read the article below originally published at Fortune.com.

As parents settle into the new school year — a time for new schedules, new activities and new demands — the pressure to balance life and work is ever present. But to suggest there is some way to find a perfect ‘balance’ (i.e., to focus equal time and attention on work and home) is impossible in my mind. Or to put it more bluntly – the whole concept of work-life balance is bull.

I’m still a parent when I walk into work, and I still lead a company when I come home. So if my daughters’ school calls with a question in the middle of a meeting, I’m going to take the call. And if a viral petition breaks out in the middle of dinner, I’ll probably take that call, too.

And that’s okay — at least for me and my family. I have accepted that work and life are layers on top of each other, with rotating levels of emphasis, and I have benefited from celebrating that overlap rather than to try to force it apart.

I refer to this as the “Work/Life Mashup.” In tech-speak, a “mashup” is a webpage or app that is created by combining data and/or functionality from multiple sources. The term became popular in the early days of “Web 2.0,” when API’s (application programming interfaces) started allowing people to easily layer services on top of each other – like photographs of apartment rental listings on top of Google maps. There is a similar concept in music, where a mashup is a piece of music that combines two or more tracks into one.

One of the key concepts of a mashup is that the resulting product provides value in a way that neither originally did on its own; each layer adds value to the other.

Now, I’m not suggesting this is a guilt-free approach to life. People – and especially women – who try to do a lot often feel like they do none of it well, and I certainly suffer from that myself. But I have learned over time that how I feel about this is up to me. How much or how little guilt I experience at work or at home is in my control.

I also realize that the concept of a mashup is a lot easier (and perhaps only possible) for people with jobs where creating flexibility is possible. With these caveats in mind, here are some things to think about to create a work/life mashup early in your career: add value and don’t ask permission.

For the rest of the story, please go to Fortune.com.

TIME work

4 Surprising Ways to Be More Focused at Work

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Paul Bradbury—Getty Images/Caiaimage

New ways to stay focused while you're on the job

We’ve all been there. That time in the afternoon when you just can’t seem to focus, not because of a lack of stuff to do, but because your mind keeps wandering to things you could do to procrastinate. Maybe you take some time to check Facebook and Instagram on your phone. Or maybe you’ve been watching a few World Cup games behind your privacy screen (yea, that’s happened). And you might even do some Internet browsing to catch up on what’s been happening around the world.

It’s no secret that these things probably won’t help you with your productivity. But what if we told you that there were some sites that would help energize you, or that taking a social media break was good for keeping you motivated during the day? Here are four ways to help boost your productivity at work.

1. Do some busywork

Most of us complain about the mindless work that we have to do, but it turns out that deep down, we actually like it! A study done at the University of California, Irvine shows that completing busywork actually makes us happy. It gives us a feeling of accomplishment, like we have had some success during the day. And since between 3-4 employees feel distracted at work, we need all the help we can get.

So the next time you feel like you just can’t focus, consider going through those emails you’ve been putting off, get some of that filing done, or complete any task that doesn’t take much mental energy. You’ll be back to challenging yourself in no time.

(MORE: 8 Surprising Productivity Hacks That Will Blow Your Mind)

2. Get a drink at your business lunch

Studies have shown that a drink or two can loosen up the brain and help your creative juices flow. If you’re concentrating too hard, it can sometimes keep your brain from having that “Aha!” moment. But when you’re relaxed (aka after having a drink), your able to be more imaginative and come up with a ton of great ideas. So consider scheduling a brainstorming session after lunch–and hopefully the hops and tannins will give you the million dollar idea.

3. Check your Facebook

According to a study conducted by Ipsos and Microsoft, 46% of people surveyed said that they felt social media increased their productivity at work. The reasoning? Workers say that it increases collaboration, helps them communicate with coworkers and gives them an outlet to promote work-related initiatives. And for companies that don’t support the use of social media, 37% of employees feel that using social media would increase their efficiency.

But there is a balance between only using social media for personal reasons, and for helping conduct business. Now if you spend 2 hours a day stalking your friends from high school, that probably wont’ help much. But if you spend some time checking industry-related tweets, or even browse a competitors Facebook page, your productivity will skyrocket.

4. Use the Internet wisely

There are some websites out there used purely for entertainment, like Buzzfeed, Reddit and Thought Catalog. But there are also some websites out there that will help us get our lives in order, and maybe spend a little bit less time finding out which inanimate object best describes us or what some random dude in California found in his Wendy’s salad. If you have a problem with checking these sites, consider using Cold Turkey. It’s a website that temporarily blocks you from going to other sites that are distractions.

Is email the thing that causes you the most stress? Then consider getting an organizational tool like Unroll Me. It helps you manage all the things you’ve subscribed to, like newsletters and updates, and then digests them for you in one simple email. For people that put off checking your email because it gives you anxiety, this is the perfect solution for you.

(MORE: How to Turn Your Jealousy of a Co-Worker Into Productivity)

 

TIME work

66% of Female Restaurant Workers Report Being Sexually Harassed by Managers

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Examples of sexual harassment reported in a new survey run from sexual jokes to explicit advances and groping

A large majority of restaurant workers say they face consistent sexual harassment at the hands of customers, co-workers and managers, according to a new advocacy group survey.

Researchers at the Restaurant Opportunities Center (ROC) United, a nonprofit which advocates for low-paid service industry workers, interviewed 688 current and former restaurant employees from 39 states, and reported a number of findings:

  • 66% of female and more than half of male restaurant employees reported having been sexually harassed by managers
  • 80% of women and 70% of men reported sexual harassment by co-workers
  • 78% of women and 55% of men reported sexual harassment by customers
  • 50% women 47% men, and 60% trans workers characterized the behavior as “scary” or “unwanted”
  • 30% of women, 22% of men, and 40% of transgender workers said inappropriate touching was a “common occurrence”

Examples of sexual harassment given by respondents ran from sexual jokes to explicit advances and groping. In general, women reported a higher volume of harassment than men.

ROC United also said reports of sexual harassment increase in restaurants which give employees a base pay of $2.13 an hour—forcing waitstaff to rely on tips from customers—rather than offering minimum wage.

“When a guest does it, then I feel a lot more powerless,” a participating Houston server told ROC United. “That’s when I’m like, man, that’s where my money’s coming from.”

Women making $2.13 an hour reported getting sexually harassed twice as much as women working in states that pay minimum wage to all workers, and they were three times as likely to be told by management to wear “sexier” clothes, they said.

Several survey participants said that management not only dismissed harassment at the hands of customers, but encouraged them to play along.

“I was kind of surprised,” said a respondent. “He said, ‘Well, those people pay a lot of money for our services and, I mean, would it hurt to smile a little bit, be a little bit more friendly to them?’ And I was blown away.”

TIME work

3 Easy Ways to Get Healthier at Work

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Jamie Grill—Getty Images

If you’re chained to a desk all day, you’re likely to feel the effects on body and mood. A few workspace tweaks can help.

This post originally appeared on RealSimple.com.

The average employed American adult spends well over a third of the day working—and more often than not, those eight-hours-plus aren’t healthy ones, loaded with sedentary behavior, sugary office snacks and bleak cubicle walls. The good news? A few simple tricks can improve your on-the-clock well-being.

Go Green at Your Desk

In a recent study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology, researchers found that office plants were linked with a 15% productivity boost. Scientists in the UK and Netherlands studied offices over several months, and their research showed that greenery increased employee-reported levels of satisfaction and concentration, as well as subjective perceptions of air quality. So go ahead and get a low-maintenance plant for your desk (just don’t forget to water it!).

(MORE: 11 Superfoods You Should Know About)

Look Out the Window

In June, researchers at Northwestern Medicine and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign found that workers who were exposed to natural light during the workday experienced higher quality sleep and overall better quality of life than those whose only source of light was their computer screen. The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, focused on “white light exposure,” which came through office windows, and found employees who worked near windows received 173% more white light and slept 46 more minutes on average than those whose offices lacked windows. If you don’t have the corner office, try to eat lunch outside or near a window, and schedule meetings near natural light to get your fix.

(MORE: 9 Healthy Predinner Snacks)

Stand Up!

Since 1950, American workplaces have become 83% more sedentary, and the average workweek is almost 47 hours long. All that extra sitting comes at a steep health price—like increased risks of cancer, heart attack, or weight gain. But some simple tricks can help even the most idle desk jockey get moving. Some ideas: Take hourly laps around the office or ditch your chair or create a “standing desk.” And stop slouching! Practice these simple moves to develop better posture at your desk.

(MORE: The 30 Healthiest Foods)

TIME work

Why You Should Embrace Late-Night Work Email

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Luis Alvarez—Getty Images

Why being constantly “on” at work is as liberating as it is confining

Eight hours to work. Eight hours to play. Eight hours to sleep.

In the early 19th century, Welsh reformer Robert Owen declared this as the ideal division of a 24-hour day and we workers of the world have been fighting for it ever since.

But in our ever more connected lives the old barriers between work and personal life are increasingly fuzzy. The smartphones in our pockets ding and buzz with messages from our workplaces late into the night, making the notion of eight hours of uninterrupted recreation seem very quaint indeed. Smartphone-dependent professionals are justifiably worried about where this road leads. In Germany, policymakers are toying with the idea of an outright ban on contacting employees after the official workday is over.

Never fear, humanity. The smartphone will set you free. Here’s why.

(MORE: 9 Rules For Emailing From Google Exec Eric Schmidt)

Robert Owen, and other labor activists who fought and died for the right to leave work at a reasonable hour, were responding to a world rapidly changing from one of independent contractors (farmers, artisans, etc.) to one of wage-earning employees. You went to work at a factory or an office where you worked under the watchful eye of a floor boss or a manager. You sold your labor away in large blocks of time during which you were not, for all intents and purposes, free. Today, we’re headed in a different, and altogether better, direction.

The workplace today is becoming increasingly flexible, which is to say that workers today, in the developed world, are increasingly free. You see it in the rise of telecommuting and of the flexible workday. Today, 34% of the U.S. workforce are freelancers, according to a recent survey from the Freelancer’s Union. We’re heading in the direction of a labor force that is increasingly free to move freely and to divide up their time in a way prioritizes their own goals and schedules, to run a midday errand or spend time at home with the family even on a late work night. The smartphone and the era of constant connectivity is what makes that freer world possible.

(MORE: Germans Say “Nein!” to Late-Night Work Email. Here’s How You Can, Too)

That’s a good thing and most workers in the U.S. agree. In a Gallup poll earlier this year, 79% of workers said having the ability to connect with work remotely using a computer or a smartphone or the like was a positive development.

As in an earlier era that needed new laws to protect the rights of factory workers, it may be that today’s changing workplace demands new laws of its own. Today’s always-on workplace can morph into a monster if unchecked and freer workers will need to be willing to say no sometimes and just turn off the phone. As in all things, with freedom comes responsibility — and that includes responsibly maintaining your all important email account. The difference is that today’s freer workers are freer to do that than in eras past.

Robert Owen’s prescription for the good life, eight-hours for work, play and sleep, still seems a useful framework. The only thing really different today is that we’re freer to divide up those eight hour blocks than before.

(MORE: Here’s a Radical Way to End Vacation Email Overload)

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