Health and Safety Update - Nov '22
Updated: Jan 4
The HSE have recently published this year’s summary of Health & Safety at work statistics for Great Britain. There are some interesting trends; consequences of the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as amendments to legislation (such as PPER 2022) which should help to reduce certain risks posed to workers.
Statistics Comparison 2021-2022
First and foremost, workers killed at work is down13% in 2021/22 compared with 2020/21. However, there is a 50% increase in non-fatal injuries this year, over last. This is likely due to a widespread return to work since the pandemic.
We can deduce from these two statistics that more people are not only back at work, but are more encouraged to report accidents.
Although more than 10,000 more non-fatal injuries were reported this year than last, the workplace injury section shows a general return to levels similar to those pre-pandemic. Trends are still heading in the right direction, with an up-tick over last year, but still downward over 2018/19.
As outlined, the reason for last year’s considerable drop in reported injuries was likely due to the pandemic – as less people were in work.
Not much has changed in the ‘industry’ section of the summary; with Agriculture, forestry and fishing taking the top spot for the workplace injury rate for another year, closely followed by construction.
These figures are down on last year though, which is interesting to note, as more of the workforce are back in work this year. It is also promising news, as it implies that even the riskiest sectors are becoming safer environments; possibly due to better equipment and technology.
Unfortunately, workers suffering from work-related stress, depression or anxiety is up 12.5% this year. With the events of the previous couple of years, this is not a surprise – as we have come out of a pandemic; facing a cost-of-living crisis as well as the aftermath of Brexit; it is no wonder that more people’s mental health is on edge.
Overall, the trends give promise to a safer future for our workers. Although our mental health has taken a tumble, we are less likely to be injured or killed whilst at work; fostering a better working environment for years to come.
If you have been affected by mental health issues recently, don’t stay quiet, reach out to someone. Whether that be a friend, colleague or HR representative, or a service such as Samaritans (Call: 116 123) or Papyrus (Call: 0800 068 41 41), speak up and stay safe.