Every 25 minutes, someone breaks or fractures a bone at work according to the latest figures from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). The HSE is launching the ‘Shattered Lives’ campaign, to highlight the devastating consequences of simple slips, trips and falls in the workplace. In Great Britain last year, 45,749 people were injured.

Every 25 minutes, someone breaks or fractures a bone at work according to the latest figures from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). The HSE is launching the ‘Shattered Lives’ campaign, to highlight the devastating consequences of simple slips, trips and falls in the workplace. In Great Britain last year, 45,749 people were injured.

Every week, one person dies from a slip, trip or fall at work and the financial cost of this to society is crippling. Slips, trips and falls in the catering and hospitality industry cost British society £31 million last year while the food retail and food manufacturing industries serious injuries carried a price tag of £50 million combined. However, the construction, building and plant maintenance industry came in highest with a total cost of £139 million.

Introducing the ‘Shattered Lives’ campaign, Dr Elizabeth Gibby, Head of the Injuries Reduction Programme, HSE said, “Each year slips, trips and falls cost the British society nearly £811 million pounds. But what these figures don’t reflect, is the extent to which these injuries affect individual workers and their families.

Slips, trips and falls can be viewed as being minor, funny accidents but the effects are not. It can lead to major injuries, and a lifetime of disability or time off work and in worst cases fatalities. ‘Shattered Lives’ will encourage people to change their attitudes: if you spot a hazard, don’t assume ‘somebody else will sort it out’.

Slips, trips and falls also have a shattering effect on businesses through costs such as employee absence, sick pay and reduced productivity. Irrespective of the size of the business and the job that you do, it could happen to you.”

HSE’s Shattered Lives campaign will offer guidance to employers and employees in the construction, building and plant maintenance and food manufacturing and retail industries where the incidence of injuries resulting from slips, trips and falls is highest.

For more information on the ‘Shattered Lives’ campaign please visit www.hse.gov.uk/shatteredlives or call InfoLine on 0845 3450055

By Claire West