Injury, Illness, and Mental Health Risks in United States Domestic Mariners

J Occup Environ Med. 2020 Oct;62(10):839-841. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001968.


Objective: Describe health conditions and injury and illness rates in a population of United States mariners, an understudied workforce vital to economic security.

Methods: In this survey study, mariner health data was collected and analyzed to provide injury and illness rates (including mental health conditions) and associated risk factors.

Results: In this mariner population of highly tenured vessel masters and pilots, hypertension, obesity, sleep disorders, smoking, alcohol consumption, and symptoms of depression and anxiety were common. BMI ≥35 was associated with increased likelihood of work injury (OR 5.7; 95%CI 1.01, 32.59).

Conclusions: The mariners were in poor overall health, raising public health and safety concerns in this population of essential transportation workers. Follow-up studies including a wider distribution of domestic mariners (deck hands, engineers) would further characterize occupational risks.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety
  • Body Mass Index
  • Depression
  • Humans
  • Mental Health*
  • Naval Medicine*
  • Risk Factors
  • United States
  • Wounds and Injuries / epidemiology*