A New Year appeal has been made to firms in the North West by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Wirral based firms particularly are being urged to make workers' safety their top priority in 2014 after 93 people were seriously hurt at work across the borough last year, explains Personal Injury Solicitor Tracey Graham.
Publication of figures by the HSE has shown that 15 people lost their lives at work in the North West in 2012/13 and 2,337 people, 93 of them from the Wirral; suffered a major injury at work.
The figures are still too high despite the fact that the number of deaths and major injuries has fallen in the last year, with 25 deaths and 2,682 major injuries recorded in 2011/12, a period in which 104 Wirral people suffered serious injury at work.
Provisional figures from the HSE show that the number of deaths across Great Britain has also fallen, with 148 people killed at work, compared to 171 deaths during 2011/12. It was also reported that more than 20,600 workers also suffered a major injury in 2012/13, representing a 10.8 per cent drop on the previous year. Five in every million workers were killed while at work between April 2012 and March 2013.
High-risk industries include construction, farming, manufacturing and waste and recycling.
Rick Brunt, HSE's head of operations in the North West, made the point that families of those workers in the North West who lost their lives last year had to face Christmas without them. It is also poignant that hundreds of other workers have had their lives changed forever by a major injury.
He said that "While the number of workplace deaths and major injuries has decreased nationally, these statistics highlight why we still need to manage risk in workplaces. I urge employers to focus their efforts on tackling the real dangers that workers face and stop worrying about trivial matters or devoting excessive time to paperwork”.
Pleasingly we still have one of the lowest rates of workplace deaths in Europe, but fatal accidents at work cause devastation to families and one death is arguably too many. Compensation can never replace a loved one. In this New Year, the HSE urges businesses to focus on good management of risk to help to further cut the number of deaths and injuries throughout 2014.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers offer a free consultation for people injured in accidents at work. Call us on freephone 0800 916 9046 or contact us online.