New HSE Statistics Highlight the Risks of Health and Safety at Work

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health and safety at work

One of our busiest departments at Ison Harrison is the Personal Injury Department. Our success in representing clients reflects our team’s extensive experience, gained in no small part due to the sheer number of personal injury cases that occur every year and the clients approaching us as a result.

Negligence can occur and result in injury or illness at any time, not least in the workplace- starkly illustrated by recently issued Health & Safety Executive (HSE) statistics.

An employer’s health and safety responsibilities

The HSE issue their “vital statistics” every year. These relate specifically to health and safety at work, and the figures are broken down into four sections; an overall picture of Great Britain, health at work, fatalities experienced at work and the overall cost to Britain. The idea is to illustrate where trends are forming and to highlight issues so that employers are better informed on where potential issues might occur.

One of the basic principles our personal injury department work on is that employers have a duty to provide a clean, healthy and safe working environment, which includes basic welfare provisions, but also access to safe machinery and equipment. Some of the HSE statistics highlight how illness and injury can occur at work and employers should certainly take note of some alarming numbers and whether they are at risk of any degree of negligence in their own workplace.

Overall picture for Great Britain

The HSE reports that there were:

  • 1.3million work-related ill health cases (new or long-standing) in 2016/17
  • 600,000 non-fatal injuries to workers
  • 31.2million working days lost due to work-related ill health and non-fatal injuries

Health at work

The HSE reports that there were:

  • 500,000 work-related stress, depression or anxiety cases (new or long-standing) in 2016/17
  • 500,000 work-related musculoskeletal disorder cases in 2016/17
  • 12,000 lung disease deaths each year estimated to be linked to past exposures at work

Fatalities

The HSE reports that there were:

  • 137 fatal injuries to workers in 2016/17
  • 2,542 Mesothelioma deaths in 2015, with a similar number of lung cancer deaths linked to past exposures to asbestos

Costs to Britain

The HSE reports that:

  • The annual costs of work-related injury and new cases of ill health in 2015/16, excluding long latency illness such as cancer, was £14.9billion

How our personal injury solicitors can help you

Some of these figures demonstrate the high cost of health and safety related absences and help to stress the importance of employers having a robust health and safety structure in place. This involves a support network for employees who have been diagnosed with work-related illnesses, or have suffered an injury, through no fault of their own. Employers have a duty to help these employees and set up a return to work programme. However, we find at Ison Harrison that disputes do occur in this context, particularly where illness or injury is long term- which is where our solicitors can provide you with the support you need to get back on your feet.

Our personal injury department, headed by Gareth Naylor, has expertise in all types of work-related illness and injury, and we can help you find suitable medical support. We can also initiate proceedings to secure the correct level of damages, to help with your rehabilitation and to reflect the pain and discomfort you have experienced. Contact us today on 0113 284 5000 and find out how we can help.

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