The latest annual health and safety statistics have been released by HSE. Fatalities are almost half the level they were some 20 years ago. Great Britain's health and safety performance is better than many European countries including Germany, France, Italy and Spain. This indicates that stronger safety regulations have had a positive effect.

The statistics show that working in the construction industry continues to be a high-risk occupation where 39 employees were killed at work in the last year. However, this number is down 19 % on last year's figure of 48. Non-fatal major injuries were most commonly as a result of slips, trips and falls from height.

Work related diseases resulted in 12,000 deaths of which the most common are asbestos-related cancers and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases related to gases, dust and fumes at work. These deaths are as a result of past exposures at work as the symptoms of these diseases take many years to develop.

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