25 dangerous jobs and what they pay

Sometimes, high-risk means high-reward. Dare to apply to these dangerous jobs.

25 dangerous jobs and what they pay

Dangerous jobs are not for the faint-hearted.

Every industry has its share of dangerous jobs, though the danger level varies widely. For the typical office worker, a paper cut might be the worst injury you’re potentially up against during the course of the day. Sure, it can sting like a witch with a B, but for those who don’t work within the safe confines of a cubicle, there can be much more hazardous—and even fatal—injuries you might face on the job. 

According to the National Safety Council the industries with the highest risk of injury include service providers such as police and firefighters, transportation/shipping, manufacturing, maintenance repair, and construction. People who work in these types of dangerous environments are more susceptible to workplace accidents, including overexertion, roadway incidents, and slips, trips, and falls, which can result in everything from some bad bruising to breaking a limb to the worst case scenario: losing your life in the line of duty.

Make no mistake: These jobs are not for the faint-hearted; they’re for people who like to live life on the edge, aren’t afraid to get a little dirty, and will risk it all for a job well done. Think you have what it takes?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics's Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities (IIF) program identifies the most dangerous jobs in the labor market, ranking fishers and related fishing workers as the most dangerous job of all. Loggers follow behind with a fatality rate of 87.3 per 100,000 workers.

So why would you choose a high-risk job over a cushy desk job? Because certain dangerous jobs will pay you big bucks to take some big risks.

The highest-paying dangerous jobs on the list include aircraft pilots and flight engineers (No. 3), hauling in an average of $111,930 a year, followed by farmers, ranchers, and agricultural managers (No. 8), earning $69,620 a year, on average, and electrical power-line installers and repairers (No. 10), making a yearly average of $69,380.

Ready to risk it all in one of these dangerous careers? Then dare to check out the full list below

Dangerous jobs:

1. Fishers and related fishing workers

Median annual salary: $28,310

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017 (latest year available for BLS data): 41 fatal injuries, 120 nonfatal injuries

Find all fishing jobs on Monster.

2. Logging workers

Median annual salary: $38,840

Most common accident: Contact with objects and equipment

Total injuries in 2017: 55 fatal injuries, 350 nonfatal injuries

Find all logging jobs on Monster.

3. Aircraft pilots and flight engineers

Median annual salary: $111,930

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 59 fatal injuries, 630 nonfatal injuries

Find all aircraft pilot jobs and flight engineer jobs on Monster.

4. Roofers

Median annual salary: $38,970

Most common accident: Falls, slips, and trips

Total injuries in 2017: 91 fatal injuries, 2,810 nonfatal injuries

Find all roofing jobs on Monster.

5. Refuse and recyclable material collectors

Median annual salary: $36,160

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 30 fatal injuries, 1,340 nonfatal injuries

Find all refuse and recycling jobs on Monster.

6. Structural iron and steel workers

Median annual salary: $52,610

Most common accident: Falls, slips, trips

Total injuries in 2017:14 fatal injuries, 1,280 nonfatal injuries

Find all iron and steel jobs on Monster.

7. Driver/sales workers and truck drivers

Median annual salary: $37,610

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 987 fatal injuries, 77,470 nonfatal injuries

Find all driver jobs on Monster.

8. Farmers, ranchers, and agricultural managers

Median annual salary: $69,620

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 258 fatal injuries, 180 nonfatal injuries

Find all farming jobs on Monster.

9. Landscaping supervisors

Median annual salary: $47,030

Most common accident: Contact with objects and equipment

Total injuries in 2017: 53 fatal injuries, 1,040 nonfatal injuries

Find all landscaping jobs on Monster.

10. Electrical power-line installers and repairers

Median annual salary: $69,380

Most common accident: Exposure to harmful substances or environments

Total injuries in 2017: 26 fatal injuries, 1,710 nonfatal injuries

Find all electrical power line jobs on Monster.

11. Agricultural workers

Median annual salary: $23,710

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017:154 fatal injuries, 13,500 nonfatal injuries

Find all agricultural jobs on Monster.

12. Construction and extraction supervisors

Median annual salary: $64,070

Most common accident: Falls, slips, and trips

Total injuries in 2017:121 fatal injuries, 5,320 nonfatal injuries

Find all construction and extraction jobs on Monster.

13. Helpers, construction trades

Median annual salary: $30,120

Most common accidents: Falls, slips, trips

Total injuries in 2017: 11 fatal injuries, 2,660 nonfatal injuries

Find all construction helper jobs on Monster.

14. Maintenance and repair workers

Median annual salary: $37,670

Most common accident: Falls, slips, trips

Total injuries in 2017: 87 fatal injuries, 23,200 nonfatal injuries

Find all maintenance and repair jobs on Monster.

15. Grounds maintenance workers

Median annual salary: $28,110

Most common accident: Falls, slips, trips

Total injuries in 2017: 191 fatal injuries, 13,310 nonfatal injuries

Find all grounds maintenance jobs on Monster.

16. Construction laborers

Median annual salary: $34,530

Most common accident: Falls, slips, trips

Total injuries in 2017: 259 fatal injuries, 21,760 nonfatal injuries

Find all construction jobs on Monster.

17. Supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers

Median annual salary: $64,780

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 35 fatal injuries, 3,540 nonfatal injuries

Find all mechanic, installer, and repairer jobs on Monster.

18. Police and sheriff’s patrol officers

Median annual salary: $61,050

Most common accident: Violence and other injuries by persons or animals

Total injuries in 2017: 95 fatal injuries

Find all police jobs on Monster.

19. Operating engineers and construction equipment operators

Median annual salary: $47,040

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 45 fatal injuries, 2,230 nonfatal injuries

Find all operating engineer jobs on Monster.

20. Mining machine operators

Median annual salary: $53,200

Most common accident: Contact with objects and equipment

Total injuries in 2017: 7 fatal injuries, 370 nonfatal injuries

Find all industrial machinery jobs on Monster.

21. Taxi drivers and chauffeurs

Median annual salary: $24,880

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 62 fatal injuries, 2,640 nonfatal injuries

Find all taxi and chauffeur jobs on Monster.

22. Athletes, coaches, umpires, and related workers

Median annual salary: $32,220

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 24 fatal injuries, 3,170 nonfatal injuries

Find all athletic jobs on Monster.

23. Painters, construction, and maintenance

Median annual salary: $37,960

Most common accident: Falls, slips, and trips

Total injuries in 2017: 44 fatal injuries, 4,200 nonfatal injuries

Find all painter jobs on Monster.

24. Firefighters

Median annual salary: $49,080

Most common accident: Transportation incidents

Total injuries in 2017: 34 fatal injuries

Find all firefighter jobs on Monster.

25. Electricians

Median annual salary: $54,110

Most common accident: Falls, slips, and trips

Total injuries in 2017: 74 fatal injuries, 4,890 nonfatal injuries

Find all electrician jobs on Monster.

Take this low-risk, high-reward step in your job search

When it comes to finding a job, the process can be terribly cutthroat, so “playing it safe” might not be your best option. Want to take your job search to the next level and get a leg up on your competition? Join Monster for free. As a member, you can get job alerts emailed right to your inbox, which cuts down on the amount of time you'd spend combing through ads. Additionally, you can upload up to five versions of your resume—each tailored to different types of jobs that interest you. Recruiters search Monster every day looking to fill top jobs with qualified candidates, just like you. So take the risk (there is no risk), and let Monster help you find a good-paying job.