Employers blamed for deaths at work

Employers were criticised yesterday for failing to raise safety standards as new figures showed that 51 people died and more than 25,000 were injured in accidents at work last year.

"The rate of major injuries, such as broken limbs or severe burns, has remained at an unacceptably high level over the last eight years and has continued to rise in the wholesale, hotel and catering sectors," said Frank Davies, chairman of the Health and Safety Commission.

"These figures show employers are failing to take simple measures to reduce major injuries."

Mr Davies was speaking as the HSC launched a report showing that 51 people died and more than 25,800 were injured in accidents at work in 1993-94.

The deaths included 34 members of the public, 15 more than in 1992-93. Most of the deaths involved people being struck by vehicles or falling from a height. Most employees who were injured worked in the leisure and wholesale industries.

Bill Myers, joint chairman of the Health and Safety Executive local authority enforcement liaison committee said: "The tragedy is most accidents could easily be prevented. Employers need to take their responsibilities seriously."

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