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When it comes to choosing a career, everyone’s path is different. Some may opt for a profession that has been in their family for generations while others venture off on their own with a small business. Then there are those who dare to do something that requires a decent amount of risk.

No woman likes to be put inside a box, somehow incapable in the eyes of her male counterparts. Sure many of us can’t bulk up to give The Rock or Terry Crews a run for their money. Does that mean we are inferior? Absolutely not. But there’s some dangerous work out there and women are doing it.

The truth is, women have been doing many of the same jobs that are stereotypically male for quite some time. Dangerous jobs will always exist – but someone’s gotta do them. Here are ten jobs that come with their own set of risks that women perform. Some you may know while others may surprise you.

Military service

In January 2013, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed an order that ceased the exclusion of women in ground combat in the military. This not only allowed for thousands of women to have a shot at a new job, but also opened the door to serve in some of the most dangerous jobs in the world. Women are now able to qualify for positions in ground combat positions that range from infantry to special forces. In other words, the ideal of a G.I. Jane has now become a reality as many women are stepping up to the challenge.

Structural iron worker/Steel worker

Iron workers have a pretty labor-intensive job as they erect or dismantle framework for structures that include bridges and high rise buildings. Because of this, they are prone to high rates of injury making this a very dangerous job.  Many must ascend unthinkable heights that put themselves at serious risk of fatality. And if you think women are too afraid to take on this job, just ask Justine Ida who joins a group of women who are ready to get their hands dirty.

Oil driller

Whether you agree with offshore drilling or not, there is no denying the risks associated with the profession. Aside from working 12-hour shifts for many days at a time – one of the biggest dangers to this job is the unknown. After all, when you work with combustible products, you just never know when things can go bad. In addition, you are so far away from the population that emergency responders would probably not get to you as quickly as you’d like.

If you are wondering why such a person would consider a dangerous job you should probably look to the payoff as salaries tend to be favorable. It has been reported that more women are starting to enter into the oil industry for the lucrative pay.

Law enforcement

There’s no secret that female law enforcement experience discrimination on the job. Many men  do not take them seriously, or challenge their physical force – placing them in very dangerous scenarios. Nevertheless, ladies continue to suit up and traffic their assigned beats and districts looking to show they are equal and ready for anything.


You may not think there are dangers associated with housekeeping, but oh honey are there. The organization Hotel Workers Rising reports that hotel workers have a 40 percent higher injury rate than those in the service sector. Common injuries include extensive strains when lifting mattresses, pushing carts and performing other daily duties. In fact, almost two-thirds of workers visit their doctors for symptoms and even rely on pain medication to get through each day. Factor in excessive workloads and you have a dangerous job.

Stunt Woman

Our favorite action movies don’t always rely on CGI. Sometimes an actual person is out there, performing the impossible-looking stunts that wow us on the screen. And some of those actual people are women. Some of the stunt performers, according to the United Stunt Women’s Association, are rock climbers, high divers, martial artists, and pyrotechnic performers. If a stunt goes bad, the stunt woman can get hurt.

Zoe Bell is an stunt woman who performed the scene below in the Quentin Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez Grindhouse film.

Social worker

When it comes to personal matters like children and private situations, choosing a profession that monitors these subjects can be scary to say the least. Social workers often put themselves in the line of danger on a daily basis as most never know what to expect. One can only imagine the reaction of parents and guardians when you have to remove a child from an unhealthy environment, or the threats/violence that comes from unstable clients.

Construction worker

As you would expect with physically demanding work, construction workers have seen their fair share of danger. Not only do they operate many pieces of equipment, but must also prep sites erecting and taking down necessary structures for multi-level units. You can expect there to be a high rate of injury in this profession.

Truck driver

Truck drivers may get in the way when you need to reach your destination, but do have a dangerous job. Not only do most have to drive extensive distances by themself, but must also be ready to react to any and every situation as most tow large (and heavy) cargo. Though this job does offer flexibility, dangers arise with highway crashes and other accidents.


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