Slips and Trips in Workplace 'Shatter Lives' Accidents Hit 571 Staff across N.Wales in Year

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Byline: MARTIN WILLIAMS

SLIPS, trips and falls in the workplace resulted in almost 600 workers in North Wales suffering major injuries or ailments requiring more than three days off work.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) revealed the 2009 figure as it launched a hard-hitting campaign, Shattered Lives.

In total, 571 employees in this region, and a staggering 2,520 across the whole of Wales, had days off because of accidents in their place of work.

Of those, 193 were in Flintshire, compared to 45 on Anglesey, 64 in Denbighshire, 66 in Conwy, 97 in Wrexham, and 106 in Gwynedd.

HSE figures show that slips and trips are the most common cause of major workplace injury in Britain and cost society an estimated pounds 800 million each year. More workplace deaths are triggered by falls from height than any other cause, according to the statistics.

In Wales, there were 880 major injuries to workers, as well as 1,640 people having to take over three days off work.

The tragic human cost over the last year included 40 lives lost.

The HSE said these huge costs come at a time when both businesses and individuals are struggling financially following the recent recession.

In response, they are launching a new phase of its Shattered Lives campaign - which began with asbestos poisoning last autumn - aimed at reducing accidents in the workplace.

HSE Director Wales, Terry Rose, told the Daily Post the appeal is of vital importance.

"These figures highlight the very real and serious nature of preventable slip, trip and fall incidents in the workplace," he said. "They might sound funny but they shatter the lives of thousands of workers ever year. …