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Numbers Don’t Lie: Work Place Health and Safety Statistics

WHMIS training and workplace safety planning should be an integral part of every business operation. By focusing on health and safety, businesses can improve their reputation in the community, retain talented employees and attract new clients. The fact is, a safe workplace will help contribute to a more profitable enterprise. According to WSIB statistics, workplace injuries like slips, trips and falls can end up costing an employer $2,000 in direct WSIB costs and a total of more than $22,000 in indirect costs. It really does pay to have a safe workplace, so don’t put your employees in harm’s way.

Injury Costs are Unnecessary Expenses
Did you know that the average lost-time injury can cost an employer upwards of $100,000? When an employee is seriously injured in the workplace, employers can expect to pay approximately $98,000 in damages, of which only 20% is directly related to WSIB. Indirect costs to the company can include property damages, lost production, administrative costs and compliance costs associated with the Ministry of Labour. In 2006, a report published by the Workplace and Safety Insurance Board estimated that a business operating on a 6% profit margin would need more than $1.5 million in sales to recover the costs of a single serious workplace injury. Simply put – when you protect your workers, you protect the bottom line of your business.

Young Workers Require Special Attention
Each year, more than 10,000 young workers (under the age of 25) file a claim with the WSIB citing that they could not return to work due to an injury that occurred in the workplace. This statistic is believed to be quite low, as many young workers try to avoid telling their employer of the injury for fear of losing their job. Workplaces that take WHMIS training seriously should encourage young workers to come forward and file a claim when an injury is sustained at work. Claims help employers identify hazardous situations that can result in injury or illness and eliminate them immediately before a more serious injury can occur.

Health and Safety Statistics

Each year, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board of Ontario complies statistics on injuries and illnesses in the workplace. The following data is from a 2009 report and includes statistics collected for the 2008 calendar year.

  • Lost-time injuries/illnesses (occur when an employee is forced to take time off after sustaining a  workplace injury): 78,256
  • No lost-time injuries/illnesses: 163,315
  • Total injuries/illnesses: 241,571
  • Work-related deaths: 335

Violations Will Cost You
Please be aware that charges can be laid for violations of workplace safety regulations. If convicted, an offending workplace may be fined by the courts. The following data states the number of convictions and the amount of fines per year for the past four years:

  • 2005/06: 326 convictions at a cost of $6,069,251
  • 2006/07: 856 convictions at a cost of $8,821,380
  • 2007/08: 1,191 convictions at a cost of $12,007,535
  • 2008/09: 1,303 convictions at a cost of $14,136,060

You Can’t Put a Price on a Human Life
The human cost of workplace injuries and deaths are immeasurable. Start embracing health and safety at your workplace today by enrolling your company in our e-WHMIS online training program. Educating your workers is the first step to achieving a safe and healthy workplace.