This website uses cookies primarily for visitor analytics. Certain pages will ask you to fill in contact details to receive additional information. On these pages you have the option of having the site log your details for future visits. Indicating you want the site to remember your details will place a cookie on your device. To view our full cookie policy, please click here. You can also view it at any time by going to our Contact Us page.

Falls cost £99m in building and maintenance sector

04 February 2010

The HSE calculates that slips, trips and falls in the workplace took 40 lives last year and cost about £800m each year - £99m alone in building, construction and maintenance sectors.

In the building, construction and maintenance sector alone, there were 10 fatalities, 1,769 major injuries and a further 2,162 that resulted in workers having to take more than three days off work caused by slips, trips and falls throughout 2008-2009 – resulting in costs in excess of £99m. Costs which could have been avoided if the correct health and safety measures were put in place.
HSE figures show that slips and trips are the most common cause of major workplace injury in Britain. More workplace deaths are triggered by falls from height than any other cause, according to official statistics.
In addition to 40 fatalities, there were over 15,000 major injuries to workers, as well as over 30,000 workers having to take over three days off work.
The HSE is launching a new phase of its ‘Shattered Lives’ campaign, aimed at reducing slips, trips and falls in the workplace. The hard hitting campaign involves raising awareness of the impact of slips, trips and falls in the workplace and direct people to the new Shattered Lives website ( for practical advice and guidance.
The campaign is targeted at those sectors with the highest number of incidents, specifically in health and social care, education, food manufacturing, food retail, catering and hospitality, building and plant maintenance, and construction.
On the new campaign website,  these is information on how to easily, and cost effectively, reduce the risk of slips, trips and falls in the workplace, and see what other organisations, such as Sainsbury’s and First Line Digital, have done. Included on the site is an online tool (STEP) and a work at height access equipment toolkit (WAIT). Advice ranges from how to deal with spills and other slip risks, to the importance of using ladders correctly to reduce the risk of falling from height.
Julia Evans, chief executive of the National Federation of Builders said: “The National Federation of Builders fully supports the Shattered Lives campaign which raises awareness of the costs and risks associated with slips, trips and working at height. NFB members have taken advantage of schemes such as the ladder exchange initiative and we would encourage other companies to visit the website and find out how they can help reduce the rate of accidents in their organisation and across the industry as a whole.”
Peter Brown, Head of the HSE’s Work and Environment Division, said: “These figures highlight the very real and serious nature of preventable slip, trip and fall incidents in the workplace. Slips, trips and falls might sound funny but they shatter the lives of thousands of British workers ever year. Making improvements doesn’t need to cost the earth and we are encouraging people to visit the Shattered Lives website, where they will be able to get simple and cost effective solutions to help manage slips, trips and falls hazards in their workplace.”
Brendan Barber, TUC General Secretary, said: “Every one of the 40 deaths caused by slips, trips and falls were preventable. The key is proper risk assessment and control measures as highlighted by the HSE. Unions will warmly welcome this practical hard-hitting campaign and will be raising the issue with employers wherever and whenever they can.”

Print this page | E-mail this page


View more articles
Article image

Why the Law Says You Need a Nappy Bin Disposal Service

At home, parents are used to disposing of their babies’ used nappies the same way they do any other domestic waste - bagging it up and sticking it in the r...
Article image

PFM Partnership Awards 2019 winners announced

Winners of this year’s PFM Awards received their trophies last night at the spectacular evening of celebration once again held at London’s The Brewery venu...
Article image

ENGIE named best sustainable FM company in the UK

Energy and support services specialist ENGIE UK & Ireland has come out on top in the Sustainable Facilities Management Index (SFMI) Awards for a second...
Article image

Pictures of PFM Awards 2019

Following this year’s spectacular evening of celebration at The Brewery venue in London, pictures of the PFM Partnership Awards 2019 can now be viewed and ...
Article image

Council aims to sign FM contracts with SME service providers

Bolton Council has announced it intends to award its outsourced service contracts to SME businesses, preferably those based in the area....
Article image

Demand for worker protection increases from new sectors

Employers are turning in record numbers to tech-driven ways to ensure their staff are protected from risk at work, according to one of the country’s leadin...