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The most common health and safety incidents in the workplace



Everyone wants to feel safe in the workplace. As with any other environment, accidents can happen. Those who run businesses need to be aware of the potential risks posed to their workers and take precautions. With greater awareness of these risks, we can all work together to make the workplace a safer place to be!

Here are the most common accidents that happen at work:

  • Tripping

In a busy workplace, slips and trips are not that uncommon. In fact, the HSE reports these as the most common workplace accident, causing over a third of all reported major workplace injuries.  Most of these are fully preventable and are mainly caused by wet floors and contamination. 


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The annual cost of slips and trips costs employers about £512 million a year and costs the health service £133 million a year. 

Slips and trips befall workers and members of the public alike in unsafe workplaces, but can easily be prevented by good housekeeping. The use of effective matting systems and appropriate signage are two of the ways these can be prevented. 

  • Burns

If you work with hazardous materials or cooking equipment at work, the risk of burns is considerable for you.

Employers must protect workers against this risk and provide protective measures for their staff. Depending on the nature of the job, this may include PPE, fire-resistant clothing, shoes and eye protection. The hands are a particularly easy area to burn, so a pair of work gloves is a very simple and affordable prevention measure. 

It’s a good idea to ensure all workers know where first aid kits are located in the building. Employers should also ensure that hot water in the kitchen and bathrooms doesn’t exceed a temperature of 48 degrees Celsius. 

And if employees spend much of the job outdoors, promoting sunscreen use is another advisable prevention measure.

  • RSI

Workplace accidents are not limited to factories and building sites. Repetitive work can cause RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury), and this is common in more sedentary jobs as well as active ones. From warehouse workers and laborer’s to office workers who spend a lot of time typing, all workers need to take preventative measures.

According to Repetitive Strain Injury UK, RSI most commonly affects wrists and hands. Workers can avoid the stiffness and numbness caused by RSI by taking regular breaks to walk around and stretch. They recommend that this is done every two hours, at least.

Employers can protect their employees by encouraging these breaks. It’s a good idea to refrain from giving workers unrealistic targets that keep them glued to their work.


A good posture chair that lets employees adjust the height in a way that means their arms can be positioned parallel to the desk is also advisable.

When workplaces are proactive about injury prevention, a lot of time and expense can be saved for everyone involved!  

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