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A Detailed Assessment of Work Accidents in the UK

Work accidents are common in the industrial sectors of the United Kingdom. If you go through the HSE statistics, you will be awestruck looking at the high figures work accidents recorded in the UK. The latest accident at work statistics released by the Health and Safety Executive shows a considerable rise in the worksite fatalities. In 2010-2011, 171 workers underwent fatal accidents which are noticeable higher than the 147 workplace fatalities recorded in 2009-2010. The construction industry saw the most number of deaths last year. 50 construction workers died in work accidents last year. The manufacturing industry in the UK also saw a huge number of injuries and deaths in 2010-11 accident at workand the number is expected to rise in 2012. The number of deaths increased from 4 to 10 in the water and sewerage waste maintenance industry. Good news is that the agricultural sector has witnessed a sharp decline in the number of work accidents.

The UK government is exceedingly worried about the spiraling work accident rates. Recently, the government held a meeting in the House of Commons to discuss about how to bring down the number of accidents at workplaces. Proposals have been made to introduce new laws and strict policies to compel the employers take measures to ensure a safe and healthy worksite. Policies are needed to be implemented to encourage the employees become more careful about their health and safety while at work. The HSE chairman, Judith Hackitt described the rising workplace fatalities as “disappointing”. She stated that though The UK witnesses the lowest number of work accidents in the whole Europe, the number of work accidents needs to be brought down further. While discussing about the UK work accidents, Judith Hackitt stated: “We all have a role to play – employers, employees and regulators – and leadership is fundamental to maintaining and improving our performance even further. In a world of work which is constantly changing, we must all continue to review what we do and how we do it and strive to become even more effective at managing risks which cost lives.”

The RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous) law has been introduced to urge the employers and business owners to report and record the work-related fatalities, disabling injuries and industrial diseases. The law describes special actions that need to be taken if gas-related accidents occur at workplaces. The employers are supposed to keep track of the RIDDOR law and act according to it to prevent and control the accidental occurrences in the UK Worksites.

Certain changes have been made to the RIDDOR law in 2012. According to the changes, the employers can report about an accident within 7 days of its occurrence. Previously, the employers had only three days time to report an accident at work to the Health and Safety Executive.

The employers in the United Kingdom are bound by law to take care of their employees and look after their health and safety while they are at work. Let us discuss about the responsibilities that an employer should take to check the accident at work claimnumber of accidents at work. The employers are supposed to keep dust and production of fumes in the workplaces. Fumes emanated due to the handling of chemical substances can lead to serious respiratory ailments. In order to save their workers form such life-threatening diseases, the employers should prevent the use of dangerous chemicals in workplaces. Asbestos is one of the most prominent reasons behind workplace deaths in the United Kingdom. According to the reports published by The Health and Safety Executive, approximately 20 workers die from asbestos related ailments every week.  In order to prevent the occurrence of such dangerous diseases, the businesses dealing with asbestos must provide the workers with breathing masks and protective apparels.

There are many instances in the United Kingdom where the workers have fractured their hands and fingers while operating unguarded machines. The employers and factory entrepreneurs in the United Kingdom need to shield the machines with safety guards. The workers need to be provided with proper training so that they can expertly handle the machines and prevent themselves from possible accidents. Moreover, the employers can consider appointing expert supervisor who would inspect the machines on regular basis to ensure that they are risk-free and can be used without the fear of accidents. The worksites should be furnished with fire extinguishers so that instant actions can be taken to prevent huge damages if the work catches fire accidentally. The workers should be well aware of the means of escape during emergency situations.

The employees are supposed to co-operate with the employers. They should record the accidents in the company accident book and inform the employer about the mishap. The co-workers of a work accident victim should support the injured person and record their opinion if they have witnessed the accident. The person who has sustained an accident at work should be prompt enough to visit a doctor to treat his injuries. He should keep all the medical documents accident at workand the hospital records, if any, to serve as authentic evidences of the incident.

It is important to avail legal support of the no win no fee solicitors to get the deserved work accident compensation. The solicitors are expert enough to deal with the accident at work claim cases and have the experience and knowledge to provide his victimized client with the right suggestions.  It is also the responsibility of the lawyers to gather necessary evidences substantiating the case and deal with the insurance company to get the best possible compensation. In certain cases, the lawyers suggest their clients to go for out-of-the-court settlement. The lawyers take the responsibility to propose the guilty party about the out-of-the-court settlement.

Before choosing a solicitor, it is important to perform an in-depth research on which particular solicitor to choose for your case. As a victim, you have the right to check the performance details of the solicitors and finalize a solicitor. It is advised to seek the assistance of a solicitor who specializes in work accident cases.

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