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America's most dangerous jobs

The American workplace is less dangerous than it was last year, but at these 10 jobs every day is a gamble.

Sanitation workers

gallery dangerous jobs sanitation worker
  • Fatality rate per 100,000 workers: 41.2
  • Median wage: $34,420

Sanitation workers brave more than foul odors and the occasional territorial neighborhood dog.

They are constantly jumping on and off of busy streets, which put them at risk of getting hit by cars and trucks, said Harry Nespoli, head of the Uniformed Sanitationmen's Association in New York City.

Careless waste disposal is another issue. Volatile chemicals, acids and flammable materials can be inside garbage bags that are thrown in the hoppers of trucks and crushed.

"These are things that aren't supposed to be put in normal collections," said Nespoli. "As the hopper cycles, the cans get crushed and can backfire right in your face."

All told, 34 sanitation workers died last year, the Labor Department reported.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics' "National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2011." (Preliminary results).
  @CNNMoney - Last updated September 20 2012 11:59 AM ET

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