At the end of every year, the HSE publish a document that breaks down all of the statistics surrounding accidents in the workplace over the last 12 months.
They have just released the figures for 2018 and they are very telling.
It’s important to not just look at trends or changes, but to highlight consistencies that need to be looked at as an industry. Within the sector of construction, where most workplace accidents occur in the UK, there are some areas that should raise some concerns.
There were 38 fatal injuries last year which is a figure that has not changed in over four years. Of these fatalities, 48% can be attributed to falls from height – which comes as no surprise – and the remaining 52% is shared pretty equally between ‘trapped by something collapsing’, ‘struck by an object’, ‘struck by moving vehicle’, and ‘contact with electricity’.
These are all workplace dangers that can be decreased as a risk if dealt with appropriately. With sufficient training, you can reduce the risk of working at heights and electricity and with a thorough risk assessment in place you can lessen the chances of things collapsing and trapping people.
There were 58,000 non-fatal injuries to workers which is actually decreasing year on year.
Slips, trips and falls on the same level make up 24% of these accidents, manual handling contributes to 21%, falls from height 19% – more than any other industry – and 12% from being struck by moving objects.
Once again, these are all areas that we can provide online training for which will make you more aware of the risks involved and how they can be significantly reduced.
82,000 construction workers suffered from work-related ill health in 2018 with a surprisingly high number of those being due to stress, depression or anxiety (25%).
This rate is significantly lower than other UK industries which may be due to a lack of self-reporting within the construction industry when it comes to mental health. The stigma attached to stress and depression can prevent workers from seeking medical help or self-diagnosing, which is something we looked at in a previous blog: Mental Health in the Construction Industry
The vast majority of work-related ill health was down to musculoskeletal disorder which is typically a consequence of improper manual handling techniques.
Manual handling is a large part of construction worker roles regardless of your particularly area of expertise. With that being said, it is important to understand manual handling risks and techniques by taking a Manual Handling Training Course and protecting yourself from any physical injury.
Another important statistic to take note of is that 2.4 million working days have been lost between 2015-2018 due to work-related injuries and illnesses.
This just highlights the detrimental and costly effect that hazards can have on the workplace.