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Work accident, injury and illness statistics for UK

Numbers of people killed or suffering work accidents and injuries, or made ill by work, is showing a downward trend.

The UK now has one of the lowest rates of work-related deaths in the European Union (EU) and such improvements are being welcomed. Major injuries in the workplace, reported to the HSE, have fallen by about nine per cent since the start of the millennium.

Overall, the HSE is warning that the workplace accident and injury toll is still too high, although fatalities at work have fallen to 229 in the period 2007-2008, which is a drop of about five per cent over the past decade.

Other work accident, injury and illness key statistics from the past year:

  • A total of 34 million working days lost (1.4 days per worker) - 28m for work-related ill health and 6m with workplace injuries.
  • 2.1m - suffering from illness believed to have been caused or made worse by work.
  • 563,000 - new cases of work-related illnesses.
  • 299,000 - injuries reported at work, a rate of 1000 per 100,000 workers.
  • 2,056 - mesothelioma deaths with thousands of other deaths caused by lung diseases and occupational cancers.

HSE chairwoman Judith Hackitt said there were serious concerns about health and safety in the agriculture, construction, recycling and waste industries.

Also of concern was the level of slips and trips. With almost 11,000 of this type of work accident reported, analysis shows these have not reduced during the last ten years.

Ms Hackitt said, "HSE is developing a new strategy that seeks to renew commitment from all those involved in health and safety to tackle these challenges and more."

She urged employers not take their "eyes off the ball" by focusing on good business as well as health and safety management.
Health and safety contributes positively to competitiveness and should not be sacrificed in times of financial pressure," she said.

These latest HSE work accident, injury and illness statistics have been welcomed but they also indicate there is still substantial further progress to be made.


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