New annual Heath and Safety Executive (HSE) statistics have been published in relation to workplace health and safety. On 31 October 2012 the figures were announced for the period April 2011 to March 2012. The figures show that the number of fatalities, major injuries and other serious injuries reported fell from the 2010/11 records. The number of people suffering from an illness caused or exacerbated by work was also less.
Some of the key findings are as follows:
- 173 workers were fatally injured. This is down from 175 in 2010/11. The average over the previous five years is 196 deaths a year.
- 22,433 major injuries were reported, in comparison to 24,944 in 2010/11. The previous five year average is 27,170.
- 88,731 other serious injuries, resulting in at least four days off work, were reported. This is down from 91,742 the previous year and the 103,627 previous five year average.
- Around 1.1 million people said they were suffering from an illness caused or exacerbated by work in comparison to around 1.2 million in 2010/11. The average over the previous five years was around 1.25 million.
- HSE prosecuted 551 cases in England and Wales, an increase of 6% from the previous year, and secured 506 convictions (92%). Local authorities prosecuted 95 cases in England and Wales, a fall of 23% from the previous year, and secured 92 convictions (97%)
- The Procurator Fiscal heard 34 cases in Scotland, a drop of 11% on the previous year, and secured 32 convictions (94%).
- 27 million days were lost overall (17 days per case) with 22.7 million due to work-related ill health and 4.3 million due to workplace injury.
- Construction, agriculture and waste and recycling remain amongst the higher risk sectors.
The full statistics, including comparisons to previous years, are available online at www.hse.gov.uk/statistics