Report reveals 650,000 injured at work

ALMOST 640,000 people were injured at work in 2009-10, a Safe Work Australia report has revealed.

The report - Australian Work-Related Injury Experience By Sex And Age, 2009-2010 - examined the work-related injury experience of male and female workers across different age groups.

Of the 11 million people aged 15 years and over who worked in 2009-10, a total of 638,400 experienced a work-related injury or illness.

This represented a 7% drop in the number of people injured at work since the 2005-06 survey, and a 16% decrease in the rate of injury over the four years (based on a 10% rise in employment in this period).

It was also discovered that casual workers recorded a work-related injury rate 50% higher than non-casual workers, with females reporting a significantly higher rate of injuries per hour worked than males.

While males recorded a 19% fall in the number of injuries incurred at work since 2005-06, the number for females increased by 11%.

Safe Work Australia commissioned the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) to compile the data for the report.

The full report can be viewed at safeworkaustralia.gov.au.

KEY FINDINGS

  •  Casual workers (those without leave entitlements) reported 54 injuries per million hours worked compared with a rate of 35 for those with leave entitlements.
  •  Working under shift arrangements or as a part-time worker was also associated with higher rates of injury. Half of all female workers worked part-time in 2009-10.
  •  For each hour worked females had a 28% higher risk of injury compared with male workers.
  •  High rates of injury were experienced in the accommodation and food services industry. This industry has high levels of casual and part-time work.
  •  The most common cause of injury across all age groups was sprain/strain.
  •  Workers aged 15-24 recorded rates of injury substantially higher than other age groups.
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