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October 30, 2013

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All time low for major injuries in the workplace


There has been an 11 per cent drop in major injuries in the workplace according to new figures published by the HSE today (30 October).
The provisional statistics show that in Britain between April 2012 and March 2013:
€ᄁ19,707 major injuries, including amputations, fractures and burns, were reported (a rate of 78.5 injuries per 100,000 employees) compared with 22,094 in 2011/12 (a rate of 88.5 per 100,000);
€ᄁ148 workers were fatally injured. This is down from 171 the previous year, and the average for the past five years was 181 worker deaths a year; and
€ᄁworkplace injuries and ill-health (excluding work-related cancer) cost society an estimated £13.8 billion in 2010/11 compared with £16.3 billion in 2006/07 — both in 2011 prices.
Judith Hackitt, chair of the HSE, said: “Britain continues to improve its health and safety performance, with important falls in the number of workers fatally injured and the number of employees suffering major injuries.
“But we still see too many deaths and injuries occur in the workplace, many of which could have been prevented through simple safety measures. Getting this right is the key to ensuring that everyone can make it home safely at the end of the working day.”
She added that with the growth of the economy, new and inexperienced workers would be joining workforces and increasing the risk of injuries to workers.
The figures show that although major injuries have hit an all time low, there has been little change in the industries like construction, agriculture, and waste and recycling, where workers are most likely to be injured by their jobs.
Heather Bryant, head of the HSE’s construction sector said: “The figures this year show a fall in the number of serious injuries in construction compared to 2011/12, however construction remains one of Britain’s most dangerous sectors.
“Year on year we are seeing a downward trend, but far too many employees are still being killed or seriously injured at work. This is unacceptable when many could have been prevented with simple safety measures.
“I have seen some excellent examples of well-run construction sites where a clear focus on safety and risk management has been demonstrated. HSE is continuing to work with the industry to ensure the right health and safety practices are in place to protect workers.”
In 2012/13, the construction industry recorded 1,913 major injuries (156 per 100,000 employees), compared to 2,124 in 2011/12 (171.8 per 100,000 employees).
The HSE added that in 2010 — the most recent year for which statistic are available across the EU — the standardised rate of work-related fatal injuries, excluding traffic accidents, was 0.71 per 100,000 workers in Great Britain, the third lowest in the EU.


Approaches to managing the risks associated Musculoskeletal disorders

In this episode of the Safety & Health Podcast, we hear from Matt Birtles, Principal Ergonomics Consultant at HSE’s Science and Research Centre, about the different approaches to managing the risks associated with Musculoskeletal disorders.

Matt, an ergonomics and human factors expert, shares his thoughts on why MSDs are important, the various prevalent rates across the UK, what you can do within your own organisation and the Risk Management process surrounding MSD’s.

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