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Public Health Rep. 1992 Jan-Feb; 107(1): 70–74.
PMCID: PMC1403604

Surveillance of traumatic occupational fatalities in Alaska--implications for prevention.

Abstract

Data on occupational injury fatalities in Alaska for the period 1980-85 were complied from workers' compensation claims and death certificates. These data yielded 422 unique cases for the 6-year period, for an average annual fatality rate of 36.3 per 100,000 workers. This rate is 5 times higher than the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimate of 7.6 per 100,000 for the United States during the same period. The four industries with the highest fatality rates were the same for Alaska as for the nation (agriculture-forestry-fishing, construction, mining, and transportation-communication-public utilities). The leading causes of occupational fatalities in Alaska, however, were considerably different than for the United States as a whole. Nationally, motor vehicles and industrial equipment accidents are the leading causes of death. In Alaska, the leading causes of occupational injury mortality are aircraft crashes and drowning. These findings highlight the benefit of local surveillance in planning prevention strategies.

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