How Dangerous Is It to Live the Life of a Police Officer?


Working as a police officer can be something of a dangerous occupation. You never know what you may face on any given day. It really depends on the variables, such as which area of the police force you’re working on, as well as what areas you’re working in. And that’s why it’s necessary for officers to take any precautions necessary to safeguard their safety. So what exactly is the nature of a police officer’s job and how dangerous can it really be?

Fatality Rates Of Officers

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, police officers are looking at a fatality rate of 21.8 per 100,000. This may seem high, but fishers and fishing workers face a mortality rate of five times those numbers. In a list generated in 2009, police officers were ranked as the tenth most dangerous occupation in the United States of America. However, safety measures are being implemented to reduce those numbers even further, such as providing a protection shield for those engaged in civil unrest. The most common cause of death for police officers takes place in transportation incidents.

The Importance Of Police Jobs

Law enforcement jobs are pretty much available in almost every single branch of government. They can work in federal agencies and local governments as well, such as a town sheriff. That creates a wide variety of hazards that one may face. This can lead to quite a stressful occupation, since there is having to face a hostile public in difficult situation and the threat of injury is constant. Facing this day in and day out, it can have a toll on one’s mental outlook in having to deal with this stress on a constant basis.

The Variety Of Work That Officers Perform

Being a police officer is more than just wearing a uniform and carrying a firearm. There are different branches of officers to choose from. Some officers are given the task of patrolling the streets on foot, while others can ride cars, bicycles, motorcycles, or even horses. Some officers are required to be in uniform, while others are allowed to be in plain clothes. Other officers have to spend a lot of time writing reports and gather information related to cases before them.

Cause of Officer Deaths

The majority of police officer deaths are the results of accidents rather than felonious murders. This is a reversal of past trends, where police officers were once the targets of serious crimes. For example, a large number of police officers have lost their lives from standing outside of their cars on a routine traffic stop or traffic violation and getting knocked down by oncoming traffic. Overall, the number of fatalities has gone down over the years, but traffic fatality numbers have steadily increased.

Improvements have been made to equipment and training over the years to help police officers decrease the chances of a fatality from dangers taking place around them. But because the work is so unpredictable in nature, it can be difficult to account for every single scenario.


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