The 2020 HSE annual construction statistics also show that people working in the waste and water industries are also more than twice as likely to die at work than in the construction industry.
In the year to 31st March 2020 there were 40 fatal injuries to workers on construction sites in Great Britain (i.e. UK excluding Northern Ireland) plus four members of the public killed.
This compares to an of average of 37 fatalities to workers and five to members of the public killed on construction sites each year over the last five years.
Construction’s fatal accident rate is currently 1.74 per 100,000 workers.
Certain other sectors are far more deadly. In agriculture, forestry & fishing it is 7.73. For water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation it is 4.18.
The all industry rate is 0.42 fatal injuries per 100,000 workers.
Construction’s fatal injury rate has come down steadily over the past 30 or 40 years – in the 1980s it was around 8 or 9 per 100,000.
In 2019/20 there were also 4,526 non-fatal injuries to employees on GB construction sites, as reported by employers under RIDDOR regulations. Of these, 2,863 (63%) were classed as ‘over seven-day injuries’.
Over the last three years, falls from height and slips & trips (falls on same level) account for two-thirds of accidents in construction (they each account for 32% of the total).
However, for the more serious injuries requiring more than seven days off work, they account for only 11% and 23% of the total respectively. ‘Injured while handling, lifting or carrying’ – musculoskeletal injury – accounts for 27% of the over seven-day injuries.