Health & Safety clients

Dangerous jobs in the UK

According to research by the
Health and Safety Executive 142 people died at work in 2014/2015. At first glance one might think that these unfortunate victims worked in industries perceived as more dangerous, boasting roles such as stuntmen, bodyguards, and sporting activities. One would be wrong; most of them are far more common jobs, in agriculture, construction and public service.

It’s almost impossible to eliminate danger completely for a number of reasons; the cost and time of attending to every minute detail would render jobs impossible. However, there are a few methods for helping prevent danger:

The most dangerous job in the UK; 33 people died while working on a farm in 2014/15, and
according to the industry represents 1.8% of the total UK workforce but accounts for nearly a fifth of all reported fatal injuries. Working with chemicals, machinery and sometimes animals, often in poor weather or near-darkness, are dangerous activities.

There are a huge number of laws and regulations pertaining to farming including
the Management of Health and Safety at work Regulations 1999, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, and Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007, to name but three. Summed up succinctly, risks should be properly assessed and managed, buildings should be in good repair, and proper restraining and handling equipment should be used when dealing with livestock.

The building trade came second in the list, with 35 construction workers losing their lives through work related accidents in 2014/15. Again, the reasons are obvious, and the potential for danger is high. Working on a building site or at someone’s premises or home poses a number of hazards

The Health and Safety Executive
pinpoints several mandatory considerations, including the fact that “The required level of skills, knowledge and experience (and training where required) should be proportionate to the complexity of the work and the range and nature of the risks involved.” Simplistically, this means that the right people must be up to the job, and must be able to demonstrate it. That combination of knowledge and ability, allied to the right qualifications and the correct equipment and clothing (click here to find out more), is possibly the most important single factor.

Driving jobs
Goods transporters came third in the list due to the large amount of time spent on the road (nine deaths in 2014/15) but this could also apply to anyone who drives for a living such as a courier or sales rep.

We all know the best ways of driving, and the best conditions for being able to drive effectively - getting plenty of sleep, making sure the vehicle is safe and well-maintained, and not driving for more than two hours at a time without break. However, some people still ignore the correct ways to take to the road,
with tragic results. While no-one can constantly govern the behaviour of every single one of their drivers, telematics and psychometric testing allied to safe vehicles can certainly help. After that, it’s up to the driver to look after themselves and other road users.