HSE releases annual figures for work-related deaths

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The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has released its annual figures for work-related fatal injuries for 2018/19.

The provisional annual data for work-related fatal injuries revealed that 147 workers were fatally injured between April 2018 and March 2019 (a rate of 0.45 per 100,000 workers).

There has been a long-term reduction in the number of fatalities since 1981. Although 2018/19 saw an increase of 6 workplace fatalities from 2017/18, the number has remained broadly level in recent years.

Agriculture, forestry and fishing, and Construction sectors continue to account for the largest share of fatal injuries to workers (32 and 30 deaths respectively in 2018/19).

Further, Agriculture, forestry and fishing and Waste and recycling are the sectors with the highest risk of fatal injury, with a rate of fatal injury some 18 times and 17 times as high as the average across all industries respectively (annual average rates for 2014/15-2018/19).

HSE Chair Martin Temple commented: “Agriculture, forestry and fishing accounts for a small fraction of the workforce of Great Britain, yet accounted for over 20 per cent of worker fatalities in the last year. This is unacceptable and more must be done to prevent such fatalities taking place.”

The three most common causes of fatal injuries were: workers falling from height (40), being struck by a moving vehicle (30), and being struck by a moving object (16). These causes accounted for nearly 60 per cent of fatal injuries in 2018/19.

25 per cent of fatal injuries in 2018/19 were to workers aged 60 or over, even though such workers made up only around 10 per cent of the workforce.

In addition, there were also 92 members of the public fatally injured in incidents connected to work in 2018/2019, approximately a third of which took place on railways.

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