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Revealed: Top 10 workplace accident hotspots in the UK

The number of claims analysed in this study represents 20,161 claims across 122 UK locations with First4Lawyers receiving an average of over 115,000 enquiries a year. First4Lawyers receives workplace accident enquiries as well as enquiries regarding medical negligence, personal injury, and road traffic accidents.

The top 10 workplace accident hotspots in the UK have been revealed*, including the top 10 locations per capita and a roundup of the most common workplace injuries utilising 10 years’ worth of internal claims data1

In 2020, the average number of days lost a year due to work-related injuries was calculated as 20 days per person, a figure that has increased by a staggering 186% over the last 10 years2. With 123 workers killed during their time at work in 2020/21 and a further 1.7 million suffering from a work-related illness during this period, more needs to be done to improve health and safety regulations in the workplace.

The northern cities of Birmingham, Manchester and Sheffield took the top three spots in the nationwide roundup with the southern towns of Romford and Redhill picked out as the top two key workplace accident hotspots per capita, closely followed by Llandudno.

Interestingly, Sheffield was the only city to see an increase in claims over the last 10 years with an over 10% (10.14%) rise, whereas the other cities have seen a steady decline over the same period. This decline has been largely attributed to the Covid-19 pandemic and an increase in the number of Brits now working from home

Discussing the research findings,  Jacqueline Busby, Head of Claims at First4Lawyers says: “Although it is positive that numbers of serious workplace accidents, including fatalities, has fallen significantly in the last few decades, we are still seeing too many people being hurt in preventable incidents.

“It is perhaps unsurprising that big cities top the list of accident at work hotspots. However, when we look at the number of accidents per capita, there are some much smaller towns making up the top 10. This shows how employers all across the country need to be mindful of how they keep their workers safe.

“We have also found that there is a wide range of injuries happening to employees – from cuts on hands to dislocated backs. Although injuries are more likely to affect individuals in certain roles, it is a reminder that no worker is completely free of risk.”

Top 5 workplace injuries across the UK

Injury type Number of injuries
Cut on hand 528
Cut on finger 525
Dislocation in hand 474
Scarred hand 453
Dislocation in back 448

Sharing expertise on how to prevent the common workplace injuries across the UK, Nick Higginson, CEO of Phoenix Health & Safety comments:

 Injury to the hand

“An injury to the hand can occur in any workplace, but kitchens and construction sites are common high-risk locations. If you are working with sharp objects or knives in your workplace, there are courses available that can train you on the correct use of knives, which can reduce the risk of injury.

 “If you work in a construction site or with machinery, your employer’s risk assessment should identify any potential danger areas and identify steps to minimise the risk.”

Hand dislocation

 “Two common causes of hand dislocation are falling from height and car accidents. These can occur in a wide variety of industries including retail, transportation and even in the office.

 “To ensure your staff are in the best position to avoid injuries from falling you can enrol your employees on working at height training, where they will be trained in the best practices when carrying out work at height.”

 Scarred hand

“In kitchens and factories that work with corrosive chemicals or boiling oil, splashes and spills can lead to serious burns and scarring. Many workplaces are required by law to have adequate fire safety measures and chemical spill stations as well as provide PPE and training to staff.

“If your business does not have any measures in place, a risk assessment should be conducted to identify the risk of harm to employees and measures put in place to avoid potential fines.”


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