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WorkplaceNL reports workplace injury rates for 2016
Thursday, April 27, 2017

St. John’s, NL – The lost-time incidence rate due to workplace injury or illness in Newfoundland and Labrador remained at an all-time low in 2016, at 1.5 per 100 workers. This rate includes over 3,500 new lost-time claims accepted by WorkplaceNL in 2016.

The rate has improved dramatically from a high of 5.2 per 100 workers in 1989. However, given that the rate has dropped only modestly from 1.6 to 1.5 in the past five years, WorkplaceNL recognizes that it will be increasingly challenging to lower the rate even further.

“I am pleased to see that injury rates in Newfoundland and Labrador have remained at a low level, and I am proud of the efforts from all partners in the province’s workplace health, safety and compensation system that have helped achieve this,” said the Honourable Perry Trimper, Minister Responsible for WorkplaceNL. “Reducing workplace incidents is everyone’s responsibility, and together we must continue to find ways to ensure that everyone returns home healthy and safe at the end of their work day.”

Unfortunately, there were 13 work-related fatalities in 2016, including eight from occupational disease. While the number has decreased from the 24 work-related fatalities, including 17 from occupational disease in 2015; any fatality while on the job in Newfoundland and Labrador is a tragedy.

“On April 28, we join the country in marking the National Day of Mourning, to remember workers who were injured or lost their lives while on the job,” said Dennis Hogan, CEO, WorkplaceNL. “We will continue to work directly with labour, employers and our other partners on focused programs that actively make a difference in preventing workplace injuries and illnesses, paying close attention to high-risk industries and priority employers, so that workers throughout the province go home safely to their loved ones at the end of their workday.”

The lost-time incidence rate has decreased in three industries, remained the same in three industries and increased in six industries. The 2016 Industry Fact Sheets are now available.

An encouraging trend is that the lost-time incidence rate among young workers declined, to 1.3 per 100 workers in 2016 from 1.4 in 2015 – lower than the provincial rate. Youth-focused programs, including the new OHS 3203 high school course, are helping to transform safety behaviours in young workers aged 15-24 years.

Other key statistics include:
·   Lost-time incidents due to soft-tissue injuries remained stable at 1.0 per 100 workers.
·   Lost-time incidents due to serious injury declined, to 9.7 per 10,000 workers in 2016 from 11.6 in 2015.
·   Lost-time incidents due to falls from heights declined, to 7.4 per 10,000 workers in 2016 from 7.8 in 2015.
·   Lost-time incidents due to assaults and violent acts increased, to 8.9 per 10,000 workers in 2016 from 7.6 in 2015.

The lost-time incidence rate represents the number of injured workers who received compensation while missing time from work due to a workplace incident.

WorkplaceNL offers all employers and workers a wide range of occupational health and safety programs and services to help in preventing workplace injuries and illnesses. For more information, please call toll-free 1.800.563.9000 or 1.709.778.1000 or visit workplacenl.ca.

About WorkplaceNL

Serving approximately 13,000 injured workers and 19,000 employers, WorkplaceNL administers an employer-funded, no-fault insurance system that promotes safe and healthy workplaces, provides return-to-work programs and offers fair compensation to injured workers and their dependents.

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Media contact:
Carla Riggs, Director of Communications
709.778.1590 or carla.riggs@workplacenl.ca

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