4th August, 2014

Australia seeing fewer worker compensation claims

Recently released data from SafeWork Australia has found that Australian employees are getting safer, with the number of worker compensation claims reaching new lows.

The report compiled data from 2010-2011 with the same findings from 2000-2001. Across this time period, the number of serious claims has decreased considerably, from 16.3 claims per 1,000 workers to 11.9 claims.

This represents a 27 per cent decrease in the number of serious claims being made by employees across these 10 years.

The total number of claims made also dropped by 7 per cent to 123,935. Considering the growth the Australian labour force has gone through in that time, it is very positive to see this number tracking downwards.

While this trend is good news for the country as a whole, some industries, especially those involved in the construction industry, have remained at high levels. Labourers and related workers had the highest claim rates, with 28.3 incidents per 1,000 employees, over twice the national average.

Tradespeople also recorded above average claims, making an average of 18.7 per 1,000 workers, raising the importance of worker compensation insurance. Without this level of cover, your business runs the risk of incurring big costs in an accident.

The expense of worker compensation have also grown, with a 60 per cent increase in the total costs associated with these projects. The time workers have to take off work has also increased by nearly 20 per cent, with the average claim now requiring five weeks away from the job to recover.

The most common injuries reported were also major issues for tradies. Problems like sprains and strains accounted for 59 per cent of harm in the workplace, while 33 per cent of all injuries came as the result of handling or lifting large objects.

Author: Murray Bruce