HSE reports reduction in deaths at work in past year

The Health and Safety Executive today released statistics on workplace ill-health, injury and enforcement in the North West which showed a reduction in the number of people killed at work.

The headline figures reveal 23 fatal incidents to workers and seven work-related deaths to members of the public in 2007/08, compared to 33 workers killed and seven work-related deaths to members of the public in the previous year.

In 2007/08 the region lost 4.7m working days due to workplace injury and work-related ill health. There were 3,357 major injuries to employees and 13,742 less serious injuries to workers, and 1,746 non-fatal injuries to members of the public.

Judith Hackitt, chairman of the HSE, said: "Any improvement in the number of people being injured or made ill by work must be welcomed. However, there is a need for a step change. Of particular concern are the agriculture, construction and waste and recycling industries. I am also concerned that slips and trips – which can have an enormous impact on peoples' lives – are still not reducing. 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."

The 'working days lost' figures for the North West equates to an average annual loss of an estimated 1.8 days per worker, which is statistically significantly higher than the rate for the whole of England of 1.4 days per worker. The rate for the North West has been at a similar rate for the past five years.

In 2007/08 there were 102 offences prosecuted by the HSE in the North West, of which 93 led to a conviction. There were 49 offences prosecuted by Local Authorities, of which 48 led to a conviction.

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