In the UK the Waste Management sector is one of the most dangerous sectors for employees to work in. This is not only because of the immediate dangers present but because unlike other hazardous occupations within other industries, this sector has many additional problems associated with it which are not apparent until long past the time at which the problem started. In layman’s terms illnesses associated with the waste management industry can take a lengthy time to surface due to the exposure of hazardous waste.
What are the Types of Accidents that occur in Waste Management?
The types of accidents that occur in the waste management sector can be widespread and diverse. The most common injuries that occur are strains, sprains as well as wounds and dislocations. However, the area of damage can be anywhere on the body, including the head, spine, etc.
Although, most of these injuries listed above are superficial and can be fixed with little or minor treatment, the amount of concussions and internal injury and illnesses are actually far higher than many other sectors. The cause of these injuries/illnesses can be highly varied and range from poisoning, effects of sound and pressure as well as shocks and various other causes.
How Severe can Accidents in the Waste Management Sector be?
The severity of the accidents occurring in the waste management sector is also much higher than in the other industries. However, most of the injuries are not permanent. NACE data shows that temporary absences account for a majority of these accidents (95.4%) followed by permanent incapacity to continue working (4.4%), while fatal accidents account for around0.3% of the total figures. While most of these accidents occur in the age group of 35-54, it is seen that most of them occur to the relatively lower age group as compared to the more experienced elder groups.
Have you suffered from an Accident at work?
If you work in a waste or recycle workplace and if you work in a waste or recycle workplace and you have suffered from an accident you will want to find out how to make a compensation claim and look for some accidents at work compensation examples to see what you could claim. Its very important as you could have life time lasting injuries and you might need medical health care the compensation can cover medical expenses as it can be expensive.
What are the Causes of Accidents at Work in Waste Management?
Waste management is more than just refuse collection. It involves recycling and corrective measures as well. As such, since the scope of work activities are quite diverse, the kind of accident relates to the field of work. For example, the dominant form of accidents faced by refuse collectors (~70%) is related to transport. By comparison, the other sectors have different forms of predominant accidents. However, the most common form of accident observed in relation to the waste management industry is with handling.
Handling is a loose term encompassing accidents like lifting, moving, cutting etc. This is about 45% of all accidents reported. Other major accidents include slips and trips (26%) and getting struck by falling objects (10%).
Statistics on Workplace Accidents that happen in Waste Management Employment
Waste management injury and illness incident statistics illustrates that the waste management industry has a much higher rate of affecting the worker’s well-being than any other industry. In fact, while the average for all sectors stands at 24.2% for work affecting the health of an average worker, it is 36.9% in the waste management sector (NACE data). Not only that, the physical risk factors are also significantly higher regarding the waste management industry. For example, while the risk of working in low temperature is at 25.2% across all sectors, for the waste management industry, it is nearly double that figure at 50.2%, while the risk of handling infectious materials is at 30.1% within the waste management industry against the usual figure of 11.3%. Also visit the HSE waste management statistics page.
What are the main causes of Illness and Injury in Waste Management?
The most common form of sickness observed in the waste management workers was related to musculoskeletal disorders. This is connected to the particular risks associated with the waste management sector, including heavy muscle usage due to pulling, pushing and heavy lifting. Other factors which contribute to it are the temperature along with work hours and the repetitive nature of the work, among other things.