Workplace deaths soar

The
number of workplace deaths has increased by a quarter over the last year ,
according to the Health and Safety Commission.

 

The
HSE’s Health and Safety Statistics 2000/01 report says there were 295
workplace deaths last year compared to 220 in 2000.

 

Over
a third of the deaths occurred in the construction industry with a further 17
per cent in agriculture, forestry and fishery sector.

 

The
report highlighted an estimated 7,800 new cases of work-related muscle
disorders and 6,600 new cases of work-related stress and mental health
problems, although the rate of reported major injures fell by 5.4 per cent.

 

“We
are greatly concerned by the increase of fatalities in 2000/01 – which goes
against the downward trend of recent years. The sad fact is that nearly all
these deaths were preventable,” said Bill Callaghan, chair of the HSC

 

“All
employers must look after their employees health and safety properly. The responsibility
lies directly at the door of directors and their representatives through the
management chain.

 

“We
are challenging Britain’s top employers to show what they are doing about
health and safety issues. I have been meeting with chief executives and senior
directors of major companies to encourage good practice which we can share with
organisations.”

 

www.hse.gov.uk/statistics/hss0001.pdf

 

By Paul Nelson

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