Accident Injury Statistics
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), in the year 2011 to 2012, 1.1 million people were suffering a work related illness during the year, and cost the NHS an estimated £13.4 billion in 2010/11. These are significant numbers and beg the question whether a nationwide rethink by employers could help to improve safety at work. 27 million working days were lost due to workplace injury or illness, which must make a significant dent in the GDP figure the government is so keen to improve. Clearly there is much that can be done in the British working culture to reduce these high costs. The personal, social and fiscal benefits of trying harder are obvious.
Regional variation of accident injury statistics
The north-east and south-west regions saw the highest number of self-certificating days off work, the Midlands and the North West the highest number of cases prosecuted by the HSE for accident injury at work. Handling injuries and slips, trips and falls are the most commonly reported and the cause of more than three days off work for accident injuries. These two categories make up more than half the statistics for accident injuries at work. Falling from a height is one of the most common causes of accident injuries in the construction industry as is being hit by a moving object.
The HSE regularly debunks myths about health and safety issues. Recent ones include office workers being banned from having Christmas decorations because they were hazardous to health (you have to wonder if a descendant of Scrooge sent that one in). Another one they debunked was that school fête organisers could not use shredded paper for lucky dips. A famous myth around for quite a while was that playing conkers, football, skipping and climbing trees presented health and safety risks to children. The HSE publishes their findings on all health and safety cases made to it.
Better safe than sorry
However, if activity at work feels unsafe, or a normal activity seems unsafe because of a change in conditions such as weather, then it is always a good idea to talk to a supervisor or seek a second opinion.
Date Published: February 27, 2013
Author: David Brown