More Must Be Done to Keep British Workers Safe from Injury
As the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) reveals new statistics* showing that 621,000 non-fatal workplace injuries occur in Britain each year, RTITB is encouraging businesses in the food services, transport and storage, wholesale, retail and manufacturing sectors to do more to improve workplace safety.
“The statistics show that all of these particular sectors have significantly higher than average injury rates,” says Laura Nelson, RTITB Managing Director. “While employers in all sectors need to do everything they can to improve safety, this should be a particular focus for those in the sectors with a higher risk of incidents.”
The statistics reveal that the all industry rate of workplace injuries for 2015/2016 was 1,920** per 100,000 workers. However, the food services industry experienced 2,560 injuries and there were 2,500 in the transport and storage sector – almost a third more than the average. Within manufacturing there were 2,270 and the wholesale/retail trade had 2,200 injuries***. Many workplace injuries are related to transport, handling, working at height and operating machinery. Alongside the human cost, financially it is estimated that overall workplace injuries cost Britain £4.8million every year.
“Appropriate training alongside correct management and supervision is crucial in helping employers to reduce the risk of incidents, prevent injuries and avoid costs to the business,” says Laura, explaining that 4.5 million working days are lost each year due to workplace injuries. In the past year alone, businesses were ordered to pay fines totalling £38.3million following prosecutions due to health and safety breaches. Many were small businesses ordered to pay significant fines.
“Regular, robust reviews of workplace systems and processes, as well as conducting audits of a company’s training needs, are vitally important for ensuring safety,” Laura continues.
For any business concerned about their workplace safety, RTITB offers an independent HealthCheck service. Designed to help boost safety and efficiency while reducing both risk and cost, the HealthCheck results in a detailed report providing recommended workplace process and safety improvements.
“Any business can request an RTITB HealthCheck – this service is not restricted to RTITB members and it’s not about selling any of our services,” adds Laura. “Workplace transport safety is a very important issue and we simply want to help as many businesses address it as possible.”
RTITB also encourages all businesses to use the HSE’s Health and Safety at Work Vital Statistics poster to educate their workforce about the potential risks within the workplace.