A report by OHSAlert says the workplace death toll in Australia is currently on the rise.
173 workplace fatalities in 2015
According to the worker fatalities webpage of Safe Work Australia (SWA) as of December 1, 173 Australian workers have died at work since 2015 started. That’s four more than what was reported for the same period in 2013.
In Victoria, the workplace death toll reached eight in the month of November, including five worker fatalities within a nine-day period. According to WorkSafe Victoria, November 2015 was the worst month for work-related deaths in the State in more than a decade.
The latest annual health and safety report of the Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines also painted a grim picture with the death of six mine workers in the 11 months to March 2015. The deaths also represent the worst death toll for the mining sector in 18 years.
Ironically, these deaths came just a few weeks after the SWA reported that there were 188 Australian worker deaths in 2014, which is the lowest-ever annual traumatic injury fatality rate.
It is downright alarming how these workplace deaths continue occurring despite the commitment of Australian businesses and workers to make their workplaces safer. In any case, employers and employees must get on with their efforts for a healthier and safer workplace so this reported rise in the number of workplace fatalities can be arrested before it gets any worse.