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Still too many work-related fatalities and injuries

Wednesday 4 October 2023

Each year, Safe Work Australia produces national work health and safety statistics, providing important evidence on the state of work health and safety in Australia.

Today we released the Key Work Health and Safety Statistics Australia 2023 report, which provides the latest figures on work-related fatalities, injuries and disease in Australia.

The report is a high-level overview of national WHS statistics which can help increase understanding of the causes of, and industries most affected by, work-related fatalities, injuries and disease.

Work-related fatalities 2022

Tragically, in 2022, 195 people were fatally injured at work in Australia.

  • The traumatic injury fatality rate for workers in Australia has decreased by 30% since 2012.
  • 93% of worker fatalities were male.
  • 42% of all worker fatalities involve a vehicle.
  • Machinery operators and drivers had the highest number of fatalities by occupation (74 fatalities).
  • The agriculture, forestry and fishing industry had the highest worker fatality rate (14.7 per 100,000).

Workers' compensation claims 2021-22p

  • There were 127,800 serious workers' complensation claims in Australia.
  • Body stressing was the leading cause of serious workers' complensation claims (32.6%).
  • Mental health conditions accounted for 9.2% or 11,700 claims in 2021-22p. This figure is substantially higher than 10 years ago, rising from 6.5% of all serious claims in 2011-12 to 9.2% in 2021-22p.
  • Accepted serious workers' compensation claims for COVID-19 increased substantially from the previous year, from 400 in 2020-21 to 9,500 in 2021-22p.
  • The age group with the lowest frequency rate continued to be workers aged 35-44 years, at 5.4 serious claims per million hours worked.

Download the full report and explore more data on our interactive data website - Our Data. Your Stories.

The dashboards on our interactive data website have all been updated with the new data.