33 Worker Fatalities In Waste Sector Over Five Years

health-safety-wasteProvisional figures released by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reveal that over the period of five years there have been 33 worker fatalities in the waste sector.

The figures show that in the period of 2014/15 there were five fatal injuries to workers in waste and recycling. This is up by one compared to last year’s figures, but down compared to the five-year average (6).

The latest rate is 4.31 deaths per 100,000 compared to the five-year average of 5.19.

The figures also show there were circa 6,000 cases of work-related illness in the waste sector and circa 5,000 cases of work-related injury during this period. The rate within the waste sector itself is around twice the all industry rate for work-related injury (4.1%).

Waste sector: 4.31 deaths per 100,000 compared to the five-year average of 5.19

5.1% of workers in the sector were suffering from an illness that they believe was “caused or made worse by” their work. This rate is statistically significantly higher than the rate for workers across all industries, according to the HSE.

Almost 70% of specified injuries in the waste and water sector were due to either “slip, trip or falls, fall from a height or struck by an object”. Lifting and handling was responsible for around a third of “over 7-day injuries” in the sector, which accounted for around 7% of specified injuries.

An annual average of between 16,000 and 145,000 working days were lost due to workplace injury in the waste and water sector. The vast majority of these days lost (over 95%) were in the waste sector. This equates to annually between 0.08 and 0.7 days off per worker (compared to 0.17 days off per worker across all industries).

An annual average of between 124,000 and 378,000 working days were lost due to work-related illness. Again the majority (almost 90%) of these days lost were in the waste sector. This equates to annually between 0.63 and 1.9 days off per worker (compared to 0.8 days off per worker across all industries).

UK Health & Safety Statistics

There were 142 workers fatally injured in 2014/15 (provisional), equivalent to a rate of fatal injury of 0.46 per 100,000 workers.

The rate for 2014/15 compares to an average rate of 0.53 for the previous five years.

Over the latest 20-year time period there has been a downward trend in the rate of fatal injury, although more recently (since 2008/09) the trend is less clear.

Of the main industrial sectors, construction, agriculture, and waste have the highest rates. These sectors accounted for 35, 33, and five fatal injuries to workers, respectively.

Fatal injuries included in these statistics are primarily those deemed to be reportable under RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations). They therefore cover accidents that are reportable to either HSE, the relevant local authority (LA) or the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR).

The figure of 142 worker deaths in 2014/15 is 9% lower than the average for the past five years (156). The latest rate of fatal injury of 0.46 compares to the five-year average rate of 0.53.

Welfare Pledge

CIWM launched its Health and Safety Welfare Pledge in response to the waste and resource industry’s performance on health and safety being one of the worst in the UK and Ireland.

One of CIWM’s objectives is to raise awareness and promote actions about the health, safety and welfare issues faced by our industry every day.

The law requires organisations with more than 5 employees to have health & safety management policies.

CIWM is asking you and your organisation to do a little bit extra and go above and beyond the law by striving to make your place of work healthier and safer.

For information on CIWM’s Health Safety and Welfare Pledge CLICK HERE 

For the full statistic CLICK HERE

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