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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Since 1993, truck drivers have experienced the largest number of injuries and illnesses requiring time off work of any occupation tracked by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In 1999, a total of 1.7 million injuries and illnesses that required recuperation time away from work beyond the day of the incident were reported in private industry workplaces. Of these, 141,100 involved truckers.

The next highest groups, non-construction laborers and nursing aides, were only at 89,100 and 75,700 incidents respectively.

As in the preceding six years, more than four out of 10 injuries and illnesses resulting in time away from work in 1999 were sprains or strains, most often involving the back. The number of sprains or strains cases declined by nearly 23 per cent from 1993 to 1999, slightly less than the overall decline for all cases.

In contrast, the number of lost time cases due to bruises and contusions increased from 1998 by nearly two per cent and cases of carpal tunnel syndrome, which is very common among truck drivers, increased by six per cent.

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