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Fall in fatal injuries to workers

New provisional figures from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reveal a fall in the number of workers killed in Britain in the last year – down to 148 between April 2012 and March 2013, from 172 in the previous year.

The overall rate of fatal injury has dropped to 0.5 per 100,000 workers, below the five-year average of 0.6.

Regionally, 118 fatal injuries were recorded in England – a rate of 0.5 deaths per 100,000 workers. This is down on the average of 144 deaths in the past five years and is a decrease on the 131 deaths recorded in 2011/12.

There was a slight increase in Scotland, however, where 22 fatal workplace injuries were recorded last year. This is up from the 19 deaths recorded in 2011/12, but the same as the average of 22 deaths recorded over the past five years.

In Wales, eight fatal injuries were recorded last year, down from the average of 12 deaths in the past five years and from the 19 deaths recorded in 2011/12.

Britain has had one of the lowest rates of fatal injuries to workers in leading industrial nations in Europe consistently for the last eight years, but Judith Hackitt, the HSE Chair, warned that this was of little consolation to those who have lost family members, friends and work colleagues.

"HSE is striving to make health and safety simpler and clearer for people to understand so that more people do what is required to manage the real risks that cause death and serious injury,” she said. "We all have a part to play to ensure people come home safe at the end of the working day and good leadership, employee engagement and effective risk-management are key to achieving this."

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