November 6, 2017
Workplace injuries and ill health cost Britain £14.9 billion according to latest HSE data
The latest annual injury and ill health statistics from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) show 1.3 million workers were suffering from work related ill-health and there were 609,000 workplace injuries in 2016/17. The figures show that while Britain remains one of the safest places to work, there is still work to do to drive figures down. Overall, workplace injuries and new cases of ill health cost Britain £14.9bn a year with 31.2 million working days lost. The annual statistics, compiled by HSE from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and other sources, cover work-related ill health, workplace injuries, working days lost, costs to Britain and enforcement action taken.
A subsidiary report focussing on mental health found that in the same year, 526,000 workers reported they suffer from work-related stress, depression or anxiety (new or long-standing). The study also found that 12.5 million working days were lost due to work-related stress, depression or anxiety in 2016/17.
Top line statistics show that in 2016/17 there were;
- 137 fatal injuries in Britain’s workplaces
- 70,116 other injuries reported by employers
- 12,000 lung disease deaths estimated to be linked to past work exposures
- 554 cases prosecuted with fines from convictions totalling £69.9 million
Martin Temple, HSE Chair, said of the findings:
“These latest figures should act as a spur to reduce the impact of ill-health and injury on Britain’s workforce and businesses and we cannot rest on our reputation. We will only achieve long term improvement by a collective approach to improve workplace standards. Poor standards lead to poor health and increased injuries which is bad for the workforce and business.”
Though there were fewer prosecutions taken in 2016/17, the statistics show an increase in fines to £69.9 million from the 2015/16 total of £38.8 million. New sentencing guidelines in England and Wales were introduced in 2016. Twenty large fines accounted for £30.7 million of the new figure.