05 July 2010 #Employment
According to the HSE`s annual data, the number of people killed at work in the UK last year declined to a record low of 151 workers between 1 April 2009 and 31 March 2010. This is down on the number of deaths in the previous year of 178. Of these deaths, 23 were in Scotland, 26 fewer than in 2008-09.
Whilst these figures are encouraging, the HSE has stated that the reductions may have been a result of the smaller number of people in employment during the recession.
Also, Unison has suggested that the HSE has "grossly underestimated" the real figures for workplace-related fatalities. It estimates that 1,600 deaths are caused by work-related incidents each year - more than 10 times the HSE figure of 151.
Hope Daley, Unison`s head of health and safety, said: "These statistics do not include deaths to members of the public, work-related suicide and road traffic accidents while driving for work."
Agriculture and construction had the largest number of deaths recorded in the figures with 38 workers dying on farms over the past year, which represents a rise from the 2008-09 figures of 25 deaths. The HSE is currently running a campaign to try to reduce the number of deaths on farms.