Health and Safety, Policies and Procedures

Preventing Workplace Injuries

Workplace Injury Statistics

Injuries in the workplace are costing 4.7m working days per year according to the latest 2019 statistics provided by the Health and Safety Executive UK. This is comprised of a reported 69,208 non-fatal injuries with an additional 147 workers killed from 2019 – 2019.

workplace injuries statistics

The majority of non-fatal injuries that required over 7 days absence was 443,000 compared to less than 7 days absence at 138,000.

Examples of Workplace Injuries

Below are some examples of reported injuries from accidents, repetitive work or altercations.

  • Slips, trips and falls and walking into objects
  • Muscle strains and Repetitive strain injury
  • Being hit by falling objects
  • Crashes and collisions
  • Cuts, lacerations and scalding
  • Inhaling toxic fumes
  • Noise and vibration damage
  • Physical violence

Compensation and National Services Impact

Of course, injuries at work cost companies more than working days off – legal action is taken in the majority of reported cases, with many law firms providing “no win no fee” services to injured employees.

Statistics from 2017 – 2018 show that the average cost per non-fatal injury to a company was £8,500 and a fatal injury standing at £1.7m per person. There are associated legal and compliance costs, as well as business disruption to take into account too.

The economic burden of work related injuries also extends to government expenditure. In the same year £2bn on spent on work injury benefits, £800m in lost taxes and £600m in NHS costs, putting more of a strain on the economy.

Preventing Workplace Injuries

Providing Health and Safety guidance policies and procedures that cover all of the activities undertaken at your workplace is mandatory. These must be updated regularly in line with any changes – and ideally you will hold certification from a Health and Safety compliance body such as CHAS.

Once you have your policies and procedure in place, you should appoint a Health and Safety manager – or attach it to an existing role. This role will make sure your documentation is always up to date and regular staff training takes place at induction time, with refreshers and at set periods.

Involving Staff in Health and Safety

Staff contracts and any post reaining Health and Safety documents that staff sign should contain information that relates to their roles and the Health and Safety precautions they should take. For example, in roles where PPE should be worn, they will agree to understanding why this is, and what to do if they do not have the correct PPE.

Other examples are carrying out Risk Assessments for projects which involve manual work and being aware of Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) and best practice Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations procedures.

If you would like any more information on preparing Health and Safety documentation for your company, please contact us.

 
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