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What are the fatal 4?

There are four main types of deadly accidents in Nebraska and across the United States, according to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, a division of the United States Department of Labor. These are often called the “Fatal Four.” They are general categories, and deadly accidents certainly can happen in a way that falls outside of them, but the majority of these accidents can be linked in some way. The fatal four are:

– Falls. These often involve falls from one level to a lower level, but may not always. In 2014, there were 899 deaths in the construction industry, for example. A full 359 came from falls. That is 39.9 percent, and it makes falls the deadliest type of accident by quite a distance.

– Electrocutions. These are far less common, but they rank second overall, with 8.2 percent of all deaths linked to them in 2014. That accounts for 74 of the 899 that were recorded.

– Being struck by an object. This was third by the slimmest of margins in 2014, with 73 such accidents, or 8.1 percent of the total. Workers can be struck by objects that are dropped from higher levels, such as power tools or parts and materials.

– Getting caught in between two objects. Twelve workers were killed in this fashion in 2014, or 1.3 percent of the total. These accidents often happen when workers are killed by equipment, such as a powered lift that pins a worker to the ceiling of a warehouse. These accidents also often involve motor vehicles that collide when a worker is between the vehicles.

If you’ve lost a loved one to one of the fatal four, you may be able to seek compensation for loss of companionship, lost wages and more.

Source: OSHA, “Commonly Used Statistics,” accessed June 29, 2016