10% Increase in Fatal Accidents at Work | Watermans

HSE report highlights 10% increase in fatal accidents at work in the UK

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have released their annual work injury report for Great Britain, which highlights the number of work-related injuries and fatalities recorded across the UK in 2022/2023. According to the report, 135 people died in workplace accidents in the UK between April 2022 and March 2023, which is a 10% increase on the previous year’s total of 123. The report shows an overall decrease in the number of fatal accidents at work in the UK in the last four decades, which is encouraging. However, it is evident that more action must be taken by employers to make workplaces a safer environment for all.

Which industry has the most accident at work deaths?

As reported in previous years, the industry with the highest number of fatal accidents at work continues to be that of construction, with 45 fatalities recorded in 2022/2023. The nature of work done on construction sites means it is an inherently dangerous industry to work in, as proven by the statistics in last week’s report. Agriculture, forestry and fishing followed as the next most dangerous industry with 21 fatalities, and 15 deaths were reported in manufacturing, a decrease of 7 fatalities on last year’s figures.

What is the most common cause of fatal accidents at work in Scotland?

The findings in the HSE report noted that falling from a height was the most common cause of workplace fatalities in the UK, with 40 employees dying after falling from a height in the last 12 months. Being struck by moving objects and moving vehicles also proved to be common causes of fatal accidents at work in Scotland.

Accidents at work in Scotland

26 employees died after being involved in an accident at work in Scotland, higher than the average of 19 work-related deaths recorded since 2018. The report noted that in terms of fatal injury rate, England has a lower rate than Scotland. This is due in part to employees working in more high-risk environments in Scotland, with many jobs in the agriculture, construction and oil and gas industries.

Speaking about the recent report, Susanne McGraw, Head of Personal Injury at Watermans, says

“The recent publication by the HSE is not an encouraging one; however, the purpose of workplace fatality reports like these is to provide an insight into best practices employers can adopt in order to reduce risk in the workplace. By highlighting the most common causes of accidents at work, and in which industries, employers can take measured action to reduce further accidents and reduce the number of fatal accidents at work year on year.”

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