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Richard Evens, Commercial Training Director, at St John Ambulance, comments on latest yearly workplace death figures from the HSE

It is encouraging to see that the number of workplace deaths in the UK has not risen this year, but we are disappointed that the figure has not reduced further. Cutting these figures over the past few years has been a focus for Health and Safety which is why it is disappointing to see that they remain at a similar level. 173 deaths is still too many and we hope to see this number come down further over the year ahead.

We note the absence of manufacturing in this year’s figures; whether this is good or bad news for the sector, we want to take this opportunity to focus the industry on the importance of first aid as a lifesaving skill, that could help to reduce the number of employees affected by injury or even death.

As a working environment that is often associated with higher risk accidents, it is the treatment you get in the first few minutes before the emergency services arrive that can make the difference between life and death. With up to 150,000 people dying in situations where first aid could have given them the chance to live, the need for life-saving skills cannot be overstated.

Last year, St John Ambulance launched its inaugural First Aid Awards which celebrated excellence in first aid, health and safety. This showcased some of the best practice in the industry, including the winners Shoreham Port Authority, offering inspiration for those organisations who want to improve their health and safety record.’

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