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LATEST STATISTICS SHOW CONSTRUCTION REMAINS HIGH RISK

HSE publish provisional workplace injury and ill-health statistics for 2011/12

HSE has today (31 Oct 12) published the provisional injury and ill-health figures for 2011/12 covering the twelve months commencing 1 April 2011 and ending 31 March 2012. The statistics will be finalised in July 2013 following any necessary adjustments.

The headlines for the Construction industry are:

  • Deaths – there were 49 fatal injuries to workers (inc 23 ‘self-employed’ persons). The compares with an average of 59 deaths over the previous five years (inc 19 ‘self-employed’ persons);
  • Cancer – construction has the largest burden of occupational cancer (3,500 cancer deaths and 5,500 cancer registrations each year);
  • Ill-health – there were an estimated 74,000 total cases and 31,000 new cases of work-related ill health.

The HSE statistics report states that:

“There have been significant reductions in the number and rate of injury over the last 20 years or more. Nevertheless, construction remains a high risk industry. Although it accounts for only about 5% of the employees in Britain it still accounts for 22% of fatal injuries to employees and 10% of reported major injuries.

The Chief Inspector of Construction at HSE, Philip White, said:

“Year after year, construction continues to be one of the most dangerous sectors in British industry. Though the numbers are down in the long term, thousands of workers are being seriously injured or made unwell by their work.

We all need to refocus our efforts and take on the responsibility to ensure the serious risks that continue to cause death and serious injury, are sensibly managed. Many of these incidents are entirely preventable.

The Olympics showed us that construction can be an example to all other industries when it is properly focused on managing risk and simple steps are put in place to ensure workers’ health and safety.”

The construction industry sector recorded 2230 major injuries in 2011/12 down from 2307 in 2010/11 and 5391 over-3-day injuries, up from 4813 in 2010/11 to 5391 in 2011/12 (though this is in part due to reclassification of figures), though this figure is still some way down on the five year average. All non fatal injuries saw a seven percent increase from 7120 in 2010/11 to 7621 for 2011/12.

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