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The previous year 31% of the 1,730 road fatalities involved people at work.
The proportion of the 2016 fatal accident toll who were commuting to or from work was 12% (221 of 1,792), broadly level with the past five years.
However, the DfT data, based on information gathered by the police at road accidents, shows serious injuries to commuters have risen by almost a quarter (24%) since 2011, according to new government statistics.
Figures from the Department for Transport (DfT) show that 2,132 of the 24,101 people seriously injured in road collisions in 2016 were driving to or from work. This is 255 more than during the previous year and the highest level for five years.
Serious injuries sustained by at-work drivers also increased, by 11% to 1,305 compared with 2015. This is the highest number recorded since 2011, when 1,384 such motorists were badly hurt in accidents.
Commercial vehicles and cars being driven for work that were involved in personal injury accidents continued to fall. Some 33,506 cars, buses/coaches, vans and heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) crashed last year, compared with 35,530 in 2015 and 39,376 in 2014, according to the latest figures.
The DfT said that comparisons between the 2016 and 2015 serious injuries figures should be interpreted with caution due to changes in the systems for severity reporting by about half of all police forces.
The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) has published its 2016-17 annual report that shows 18 people were killed in accidents at work in the 12 months to the end of March 2017, up more than a third on the previous 12 months.
Britain's road regulator the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency can fine lorry, bus and coach drivers up to £300 if they exceed the number of hours they are allowed to drive or are found to have taken not enough breaks.Domestic rules (there are separate requirements in Northern Ireland) state that lorry drivers must not be on the road for more than ten hours a day.
Martin Greenwood was working as a driver for YCT at Thurrock Parkway in Tilbury. He was coupling a HGV tractor unit to a trailer on 20 October 2015 when the vehicle started to roll forward out of control. Greenwood attempted to climb into the lorry’s cab to apply the brakes but was crushed between his vehicle and another, Southend Magistrates’ Court was told. He sustained serious injuries and died that day.
As previously reported by IOSH Magazine, heavy goods vehicle (HGV) driver Martin Greenwood was killed on YCT’s site in Thurrock Parkway, Tilbury, Essex, on 20 October 2015. He was coupling his tractor unit cab to a trailer that a colleague had dropped off at the loading bay in the early hours of that morning, HSE inspector Jessica Churchyard said.
The report has made 40 recommendations for businesses, regulators, the government and the public sector after it found one worker in six suffers from a mental illness and 300,000 people with long-term mental health problems lose their jobs every year.
The estimated global total for fatal occupational accidents and work-related illness is 19% higher than the 2.33 million estimated in 2014, reflecting the inclusion of respiratory cases caused by chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and work-related asthma, which was missing from the 2014 report. Work diseases account for 2.4 million (86.3%) of the total estimated deaths in the latest report, which was compiled by the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs in Finland and the Workplace Safety and Health Institute (WSH) in Singapore with the support of the ILO.