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Accid Anal Prev. 2011 Jan;43(1):123-7. doi: 10.1016/j.aap.2010.08.001.

Individual and occupational factors related to fatal occupational injuries: a case-control study.

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Public Health General Directorate, Health Department, Land of Valencia Government, Av. Catalunya 21, Valencia 46020, Spain. villanueva


This study has been designed in order to identify factors increasing the risk of a fatal outcome when occupational accidents occur. The aim is to provide further evidence for the design and implementation of preventive measures in occupational settings. The Spanish Ministry of Labour registry of occupational injuries causing absence from work includes information on individual and occupational characteristics of injured workers and events. Registered fatal occupational injuries in 2001 (n=539) were compared to a sample of non-fatal injuries in the same year (n=3493). Risks for a fatal result of occupational injuries, adjusted by individual and occupational factors significantly associated, were obtained through logistic regression models. Compared to non-fatal injuries, fatal occupational injuries were mostly produced by trapping or by natural causes, mostly related to elevation and transport devices and power generators, and injured parts of body more frequently affected were head, multiple parts or internal organs. Adjusted analyses showed increased risk of fatality after an occupational injury for males (adjusted odds ratio aOR=10.92; 95%CI 4.80-24.84) and temporary workers (aOR=5.18; 95%CI 2.63-10.18), and the risk increased with age and with advancing hour of the work shift (p for trends <0.01). Injuries taking place out of the usual occupational setting (aOR=2.85, 95%CI 2.27-3.59), or carrying out atypical tasks (aOR=2.08; 95%CI 1.27-3.39) showed increased risks of a fatal result too, as occupational accidents in agricultural or construction companies. These data can help to select and define priorities for programmes aimed to prevent fatal consequences of occupational injuries.

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