Fatal Work Accidents 2017/18

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Work-related deaths - The statistics

In 2017/2018 144 workers were killed in work-related accidents in Great Britain.

This was nine more than in 2016/17 and slightly above the five year average of 141 per year (from 2013/14 to 2017/18).

Fatal Injuries by Sector


Fatal Injury Rate by Sector

(fatalities per 100,000 workers) 
10.26 Waste/Recycling 8.44 Agriculture 1.64 Construction 0.96 Transport/Storage 0.52 Manufacturing 0.16 Communications/Business 0.45 All Industries

Types of Fatal Work Accident

35 Falls from height 26 Struck by moving Vehicle 23 Struck by moving object 16 Trapped by something collapsing/overturning 13 Contact with moving machinery 9 Injured by animal 4 Slips, trips, falls on same level 3 Drowning/Asphyxiation 3 Contact with electricity/Electrical discharge 3 Exposure to Fire 9 Other Fatal Work Accidents

Fatal Injury Rate within GB

0.85 Wales 0.63 Scotland 0.45 England

Fatal Injuries to Members of the Public

Transportation and Storage Construction Across All Injuries - 100 Waste/Recycling Agriculture Public administration; education; human health and social work activities Arts, entertainment and recreation; all other service activities Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles; accommodation and food service activities 51 18 10 6 7 4 4
 *All figures above taken from RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) statistics

Fatal Injury Rate Across Europe

Figures for EU countries use a standardised rate to address the differing industrial backgrounds across the countries. (per 100,000 workers)

0.33 Lowest: Finland 0.51 UK 1.29 EU Average 3.65 Highest: Romania
 **Eurostat reporting 2015

What happens following a death in the workplace

All deaths resulting from work-related activity must be reported under RIDDOR.

Internal (Employers) and External (HSE) Investigations must take place under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

Full disclosure of the circumstances of an accident must be disclosed to injured parties considering legal action.

The investigation should provide:

  • An understanding of how and why things went wrong
  • An understanding of the ways workers are exposed to harmful or dangerous conditions
  • A frank view of how workplace activities are actually being carried out (including short cuts and where rules are being ignored)
  • Identification of where risk controls are failing and where lessons can be learned

Investigations are used to:

  • provide evidence in civil claims for compensation
  • prevent similar accidents in the future
  • assist in the development of managerial skills and strategies for the benefit of the organisation
***SOURCE: HSE Workbook – Investigating accidents and incidents

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