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Work-related deaths among young workers under 25 years of age, Oklahoma, 1998-2004.

Wendling T
Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Department of Health, 2006 May; :1-5
The Oklahoma State Department of Health, Injury Prevention Service began a National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) funded Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) project in July 1997. Currently, 14 other states also participate in the NIOSH FACE program. FACE is a data collection and research project designed to identify and prevent occupational fatalities. Data are collected on all work-related fatalities. Oklahoma FACE staff investigates incidents involving highway work zones, machinery, youth under 18 years of age, and immigrant workers. Prevention recommendations are made, and information is disseminated to related businesses/industries, safety professionals, and other stakeholders. Each year in Oklahoma, approximately 109 occupational fatalities occur; 20 are machine-related. Forklifts, tractors, and other machinery can be very dangerous and all possible precautions should be taken to prevent injuries and deaths. From 1998 to 2003, 85% of machine-related agricultural fatalities in Oklahoma involved tractors. On average, one forklift-related fatality occurs annually. Jump-starting or bypass-starting mobile equipment can increase the likelihood of serious injury or death. Jump-starting and bypass-starting are dangerous because the operator is required to work closely to the wheels and other moving parts of the equipment (Figure 1). Operators may be run over while attempting to jump-start or bypass-start equipment when the transmission is not in neutral and/or the emergency brake is not engaged. Operators with safety training and up to 15 years of experience have been killed attempting to jump-start/bypass-start equipment. Familiarity with equipment does not protect operators when a risky practice, such as jump-starting/bypass-starting, is being performed. Between July 1997 and February 2005, eight jump-start/bypass-start fatalities occurred in Oklahoma. Seven of the victims were male and one was female, with ages ranging from 35 to 70 years (average age 57 years). Seven victims were operators and one was a secretary/treasurer assisting in a jump-start. Six of the eight incidents involved tractors; one involved a forklift; and one involved a dirt compacting machine. Farming was involved in five of the jump-start/bypass-start-related incidents, while one occurred in road construction, one in mining, and one in machinery repair. Four victims used jumper cables during the incident, and the other four victims used a hand tool to bypass-start the equipment. Seventy-five percent of the victims were performing routine job tasks of their usual occupation during the time of incident.
Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Safety-equipment; Safety-practices; Machine-operation; Age-factors; Epidemiology; Statistical-analysis; Sex-factors; Agricultural-industry; Agricultural-machinery; Agricultural-workers; Agriculture; Farmers; Tractors; Retail-workers; Racial-factors
Injury Prevention Service, Oklahoma State Department of Health, 1000 NE 10th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73117
Publication Date
Document Type
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-613938; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-OH-008342
Source Name
Work-related Deaths Among Young Workers Under 25 Years of Age, Oklahoma, 1998-2004
Performing Organization
Oklahoma State Department of Health
Page last reviewed: March 18, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division