Fatal Work-Related Injuries
In California, an average of 439 workers die as a result of fatal occupational injuries each year. Understanding how and why these fatal injuries occur is essential to develop effective prevention strategies.
What Is FACE?
The California Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (CA/FACE) program identifies and studies fatal occupational injuries throughout California, and provides prevention recommendations that can be implemented at the workplace. CA/FACE is funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and is one of seven currently funded FACE states. Our program is one of many public health programs within the California Department of Public Health, Occupational Health Branch.
What FACE Is Not
CA/FACE does not evaluate compliance with occupational safety and health standards or determine fault. Many factors contribute to an event in which a worker dies. Our investigations consider all factors and do not focus on "who was to blame."
Program investigators conduct in-depth research-oriented investigations of fatal incidents. They visit the incident site and interview employers and co-workers. All participants remain anonymous - individual and company names are not included in the report. A site visit is essential for observing the location of the fatality, and it enables the investigator to recreate a complex sequence of events. There are many factors that must be considered to understand how the fatality occurred.
FACE Prevention Materials
Information gained through our onsite investigation is used to develop comprehensive recommendations to prevent similar workplace deaths. These recommendations are highlighted in CA/FACE prevention materials and shared with employers, workers, trade associations, unions, equipment manufacturers, health and safety professionals, and advocates.