As Latino workers take on more and more of the nation’s toughest and dirtiest jobs, they increasingly are paying for it with their lives. Preliminary federal figures released last week showed that of the 4,405 U.S. workers killed on the job in 2013, 797 were Latinos. That equates to 3.8 of every 100,000 full-time Latino employees in the U.S. dying in workplace accidents during the year.
The nation’s red and blue states often are miles apart in social attitudes and, of course, political outlook. It turns out that they also divide into distinct camps when it comes to a grimmer measure — fatal traffic accidents.
Prompted by last year’s deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, Calif., lawmakers in Washington moved uncharacteristically quickly. The Senate Finance Committee in May unanimously passed the Pipeline Transportation Safety Improvement Act of 2011 to toughen regulations. As the San Francisco Chronicle reports, support for the legislation was so broad that Senate Democrats initiated steps to get it passed by unanimous consent.