“Every worker killed is unacceptable,” says BSC

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has confirmed that 148 workers were fatally injured between April 2012 and March 2013.

The new figures reveal an improvement, as 172 workers were fatally injured at work the previous year. However, the British Safety Council (BSC) claimed “every worker killed is unacceptable”.

“Our vision is that no-one is injured or made ill by work,” said BSC CEO Alex Botha. “Reductions are positive, but look more closely and it is clear that more can be done.”

According to the BSC, 14% of fatalities occurred within the manufacturing sector. Employers in sectors using machinery, such as the meat processing plants “are asked to pay particular attention to ensure machinery is safe; if required, that staff have the necessary personal protective equipment; and appropriate training and instruction is provided to use machinery or other tools, such as knives, that can cause harm”.

Botha further explained that the last four years have seen improvements in mortality rates and that more needs to be done in terms of identifying the events that lead up to the most common types of deaths.

He added: “The moral case to do so is unequivocal, the business case to do so is strong. What we need to see is even better shared understanding of what makes for good health and safety: leadership, workforce engagement, competent advice and training.

“The HSE and others have great resources, and businesses up and down the country have knowledge and experience to share. We need to pull together and make sure that every worker returns home safe and well.