Safety body launches campaign to highlight preventable workplace incidents leading to 10 fatalities and thousands of injuries in 2008-2009

Slips, trips and falls in the workplace lead to the death of 40 workers across all industries in 2009, and cost the construction and maintenance sector almost a £100m, the Health and Safety Executive has revealed.

The warning comes as the safety body launches its “shattered lives” campaign.


The HSE said in the building, construction and maintenance sector there were 10 fatalities, 1,769 major injuries and a further 2162 that resulted in workers having to take more than three days off work caused by slips, trips and falls throughout 2008-2009. These accidents resulted in costs of more than £99m.

HSE figures show that slips and trips are the most common cause of major workplace injury in Britain. More workplace deaths are triggered by falls from height than any other cause, according to official statistics.

In addition to 40 fatalities, there were over 15,000 major injuries to workers, as well as over 30,000 workers having to take over three days off work.

The campaign is targeted at those sectors where there is a high number of slips, trips and falls incidents each year, such as construction.

A new campaign website will give information on how companies can reduce the risk of slips, trips and falls in the workplace.

Peter Brown, head of the HSE’s work and environment division, said: “These figures highlight the very real and serious nature of preventable slip, trip and fall incidents in the workplace.”

Julia Evans, chief executive of the National Federation of Builders, said: “NFB members have taken advantage of schemes such as the ladder exchange initiative and we would encourage other companies to visit the website and find out how they can help reduce the rate of accidents in their organisation and across the industry as a whole.”