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Fatality reports published (

Please see below media release from the Safe Work Australia Website. This media release and published reports highlights the particular need to assess risks of falls in the workplace with 232 workers dying following a fall from height over the eight years from 2003 to 2011.

Consider your fall risks and your controls, are they suitable and in accordance with the harmonised legislation? For a falls risk survey or to review and revamp your procedures and controls relating to working at heights call OHS72 today.

31 October 2013

Fatality reports published

Safe Work Australia CEO Rex Hoy today announced the release of two reports examining fatalities due to work-related traumatic injury and injuries and fatalities arising from falls from height.

The first report Work-related injuries and fatalities involving a fall from height, Australia shows there has been no improvement in the number of workers killed each year due to falls from height with 232 workers dying following a fall from height over the eight years from 2003 to 2011.

“This latest report shows more needs to be done to prevent workers falling from heights particularly in the construction industry,” said Mr Hoy.

The construction industry accounted for one third of falls-related fatalities in the last four years. Many of the fatalities involved house construction workers particularly painters and roofers.

One-third of the workers fell to their death from a ladder, with falls from vehicles and roofs also prominent in the data.

“These figures show why the construction industry was identified as a priority for prevention activities in the Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022.”

“It is important for all workers to make safety a focus in their day to day work,” said Mr Hoy.

In addition to the high number of fatalities due to falls, 21 workers lodged a workers’ compensation claim each day for a falls-related injury and required one or more weeks off work. A typical claim saw the worker off work for over six weeks.

“This is a considerable loss of productivity and employers should be ensuring workers have the correct safety equipment for the task,” said Mr Hoy.

“Falls-related incidents also place a considerable burden on our health system with nearly one in ten of the workers who were hospitalised in the 2006 to 2009 period admitted with injuries due to a fall from height.”

The second report released today Work-related traumatic injury fatalities Australia 2012 showed there has been no change in the total number of workers killed in the last two years. While falls from height accounted for 13 percent of worker deaths in 2012, there were three times as many deaths due to a vehicle crash.

Over the past ten years two-thirds of all fatalities involved a vehicle in some way. In 2012, 40 truck drivers and 26 workers in cars died while working.

Mr Hoy said Safe Work Australia is working with work health and safety authorities to achieve a 20 percent reduction in the number of work-related fatalities by 2022.

The full reports and more information about traumatic injuries and fatalities resulting from falls are available from the Safe Work Australia website.

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