HSE reveals rise in waste sector for non-fatal injuries

According to a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) report, the number of non-fatal injuries to waste sector workers increased by 2% in 2022-23.

The report states that there were 1,616 injuries in the past year, compared to 1,580 in 2021-22. The overall percentage of employees who experienced non-fatal injuries in the workplace was around 3.3%. The provisional figure published last year for 2021-22 was revised from 1,555 to 1,580. The average estimate for 2017-18 to 2022-23 was 4,000.

Out of all the injuries reported in the past year, 74% resulted in the incapacitation of a worker for over seven days. Slips, trips or falls on the same level accounted for a third of all incidents, while a quarter of workers were injured while handling, lifting or carrying objects.

Over the past five years, 6% of all injuries were caused by contact with moving machinery, while 5% of injuries resulted in incapacitation for longer than a week after being struck by a vehicle.

Incidents with vehicles and moving machinery are the most common causes of fatalities in the sector. The report also revealed six fatalities in 2022-23.

The report also showed that the private sector accounted for most injuries reported by employers, at 57%, compared to 43% at local authorities. The rate of injuries per 100,000 workers in the sector stood at 1,323 in 2021-22, after being revised from the provisional figure last year.

HSE also revealed that around 3.9% of employees suffered from work-related ill health, with an average estimate from 2016-17 to 2022-23. Of these cases, 82% were caused by musculoskeletal disorders, stress, depression or anxiety.

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