One hundred and thirty-five workers were killed in work-related incidents in Great Britain in the last year, according to figures published this month (Thursday 6th July) by the Health and Safety Executive.
The industries with the highest deaths were construction (45), agriculture, forestry, and fishing (21), manufacturing (15), and transportation and storage (15). Agriculture, forestry, and fishing has the highest rate of fatal injury per 100,000 workers of all the main industrial sectors followed by waste and recycling.
The annual data release published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Great Britain’s workplace regulator, covers the period from April 2022 to March 2023.
The three most common causes of fatal injuries are falls from height (40), being struck by a moving object (29), and being struck by a moving vehicle (20).
The total of 135 worker deaths in 2022/23 is higher than the previous year (123) but is in line with pre-pandemic levels. The figure for 2020/21 was 145.
Great Britain is one of the safest places in the world to work. There has been a long-term downward trend in the rate of fatal injuries to workers, though in the years prior to the coronavirus pandemic the rate was broadly flat.
A further 68 members of the public were killed following a work-related incident in 2022/23. This is a decrease of 20 from last year.
HSE’s Chief Executive Sarah Albon said: “Any loss of life in the workplace is a tragedy.
“While these figures show Great Britain is one of the safest countries in the world to work, safety must continue to be at the top of everyone’s agenda.
“Our mission is to protect people and places and we remain committed to maintaining safe workplaces and holding employers to account for their actions.”
HSE has also published the annual figures for Mesothelioma, a cancer caused by past exposure to asbestos. The figures show 2,268 people died from the disease in 2021. This is a fall of 302 compared with the 2,570 deaths in 2020 and substantially lower than the average of 2,520 deaths per year over the period 2012-2019.