Australian workplace fatalities continue to decline

Media Release
  • Minister for Employment
  • Minister for Women
  • Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service

Minister for Employment, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash released the Work-related Traumatic Injury Fatalities, Australia 2014 report this morning, showing the number of Australians killed at work continues to steadily decline.

The Safe Work Australia report shows that 188 workers died from workplace injuries in 2014, the lowest number of fatalities in the 12 years of the series.

While the downward trend is encouraging, the number of worker deaths highlights the importance of National Safe Work Month (Safety Month)—a time to focus on health and safety in your workplace to reduce death, injury and disease.

Using the Safety Month theme of “Be safe. Be healthy. Because…” Minister Cash is urging Australians to Be Safe. Be healthy. Because… your actions make a difference to workers’ lives.

“While a single worker fatality is one too many, the overall downward trend is a positive sign that Australian businesses and workers are committed to keeping their workplaces safe,” Minister Cash said.

“Safe Work Australia data show worker fatalities have been steadily decreasing over the past decade. This trend is encouraging, however no worker should die at work and it is very important that we keep striving to ensure this number is lower again next year.”

“I am pleased that Australia has made great strides in improving health and safety over the last decade,” Minister Cash said.

“Our challenge is to continue this trend and National Safe Work Month is one way to put a spotlight on workplace safety and drive further improvements through education and raising awareness.”

The worker fatality rate in 2014 was 1.61 worker fatalities per 100,000 workers – for male workers the fatality rate was 2.81 and for female workers the rate was 0.23.

Over the 12 years of the series, one-third of workers who were killed while working died in vehicle collisions on public roads, one-third in vehicle collisions at workplaces (not on public roads) while one-third of fatalities did not involve a vehicle.

The Work-related Traumatic Injury Fatalities, Australia 2014 report is available at http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/swa/statistics/work-related-fatalities/pages/workrelatedtraumaticinjuryfatalities

For more information about how to participate in Safety Month, explore the Safety Month web page

For more information

Media line: (02) 6240 8667, media@employment.gov.au