What is the OSHA Fatal Four?

Understanding Workplace Fatalities

Since the development of the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) in 1971, workplace fatalities have dramatically decreased by nearly 50%. And while every job comes with a certain amount of risk, however, OSHA estimates that over 20% of workplace fatalities occur in construction jobs. In these jobs, the leading cause of fatalities can be broken down between four main categories (otherwise known as the 'Fatal Four'): falls, struck by an object, electrocutions, and caught-in/between.

This infographic contains important national statistics regarding the leading causes of construction site deaths, excluding highway collisions.


  • Falls - 338 fatalities (33.5%)
  • Struck by an Object - 112 fatalities (11.1%)
  • Electrocutions - 86 fatalities (8.5%)
  • Caught In/Between - 55 fatalities (5.5%)

Out of 4,779 worker fatalities in private industry in 2018, 1,008 or 21.1% were in construction.

*Data Source: OSHA, 2019

Additional Safety Precautions

Since these are so prominent, OSHA has taken extra precautions to ensure workers' safety when working on any type of construction site. And although these precautions typically include employers providing and workers wearing the appropriate safety equipment, some other measures they have taken include:

  • Establishing perimeter protection and covering/labeling floor openings to prevent falls.
  • Encouraging the use of high-visibility clothing and being aware of your surroundings to avoid being struck by vehicles or other objects.
  • Being aware of and avoiding power lines and only using grounded or double-insulated power tools to prevent electrocutions.
  • If working in a trench-style area, creating a protective system (which may include a shield) to prevent caught in/between fatalities.

Contact a Fort Lauderdale Workers' Compensation Attorney

If your loved one has been a victim of a construction job fatality, you may be able to seek compensation. Our experienced workers' compensation attorneys will work with you to secure adequate compensation for your loss and assist you in taking further action if requested.

Contact Rosenberg & Rosenberg, P.A. at (888) 499-6206 to schedule a free consultation today.

*Note, this data reflects statistics from 2018 and likely has changed since publication. This article may be edited in the future once update information becomes available.


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