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HSE releases latest annual injury and ill health statistics for Britain

10 November 2017

The latest annual injury and ill health statistics for Great Britain from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) show 1.3 million workers were suffering from work related ill-health and there were 609,000 workplace injuries in 2016/17. Workplace injury and new cases of ill health cost Britain £14.9bn a year with 31.2 million working days lost.

The annual statistics, compiled by HSE from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and other sources, cover work-related ill health, workplace injuries, working days lost, costs to Britain and enforcement action taken.

Top line statistics show that in 2016/17 there were:

*137 workers killed at work

*70,116 injuries to employees reported under RIDDOR

*609,000 injuries at work according to the Labour Force Survey

*1.3 million working people suffering from a work-related illness

*2,542 mesothelioma deaths due to past asbestos exposures (2015)

*12,000 lung disease deaths estimated to be linked to past work exposures

*554 cases prosecuted with fines from convictions totalling £69.9 million

*31.2 million working days lost due to work-related illness and workplace injury

*£14.9 billion estimated cost of injuries and ill health from current working conditions (2015/16)

The 137 fatal injuries in 2016/17 is the second lowest on record (after 2013/14 – 136 fatalities) and represents a reduction of 10 fatalities from 2015/16. However, it is possible that this change can be explained by natural variation in the figures. In statistical terms the number of fatalities has remained broadly level in recent years – the average annual number of workers killed at work over the five years 2012/13-2016/17 is 142.

The UK consistently has one of the lowest rates of fatal injury across the EU.

Though there were fewer prosecutions taken in 2016/17, the statistics show an increase in fines to £69.9 million from the 2015/16 total of £38.8 million. New sentencing guidelines in England and Wales were introduced in 2016. Twenty large fines accounted for £30.7 million of the new figure.

Fines are not collected by HSE but are levied by the courts in criminal cases and paid to HM Treasury.

All images - HSE
All images - HSE

Martin Temple, HSE Chair, said of the findings:

“These latest figures should act as a spur to reduce the impact of ill-health and injury on Britain’s workforce and businesses and we cannot rest on our reputation.

“We will only achieve long term improvement by a collective approach to improve workplace standards. Poor standards lead to poor health and increased injuries which is bad for the workforce and business.”

The full annual injury and ill-health statistics report can be found at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/statistics/


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