Responding to the released figures HSE Chair Judith Hackitt said,
'Whilst we welcome the headline decrease in overall numbers of fatalities, there is absolutely no room for complacency as the report suggests a plateau in the overall five year trend. Great Britain’s position amongst major European Union countries is in relative terms a creditable one, but none can find it acceptable that 228 people died directly as a cause of their work. After many years of improvement, it is disappointing that we are on a performance plateau. This stresses the need for everyone, employers and employees alike to make a further effort to reduce this total of human misery.
'Evidence shows that where employers and employees work closely together to agree the agenda and set targets to tackle real issues, they have made significant improvements. We want this to continue and we also want to see employers taking more ownership and leadership to embed health and safety in their organisational culture and boardrooms.
'The high levels of fatalities in the agriculture and construction sectors continue to be of particular concern to us and will be a major focus of HSE’s work priorities over the coming year.'
Industry sectors Workers (2007/08) Workers (2006/07)
Agriculture, forestry and fishing 39 36
Construction 72 79
Manufacturing 34 35
Services 74 86