334 people died in work accidents until June, according to provisional data from the Ministry of Labor. The balance until the middle of the year shows a reduction in deaths compared to the same period in 2020, a year in which Work-related deaths increased despite the reduction in activity due to the pandemic. Until June, the number of deceased workers has decreased by 5.6% compared to the previous year.
His name was Xavi and he died at the age of 19 while working
Of the total deaths, 227 people died during their working hours, 16 less than in the same period in 2020, and the remaining 57 fatal accidents registered were accidents ‘in route’. That is, those that occur when going to or returning from work, which is four fewer deaths than last year.
While among wage earners there has been a decrease in workplace deaths, 307 people compared to the 329 who died until the end of June in 2020, the accident rate among the self-employed has remained. Until the middle of the year, 27 self-employed workers died in occupational accidents, two more than in 2020.
The most common fatal accident are “heart attacks, strokes” and other causes considered “natural” in statistics, which led to 107 deaths so far this year. It is followed by traffic accidents, with 45 deaths and “being crushed, trapped, suffering an amputation”, for which 44 people died.
The sectors with the most fatal accidents are construction, with 0.7 deaths per 100,000 workers, and agriculture with 0.5 deaths. The average is 0.25 deaths per 100,000 workers.
The unions insist on the need to increase prevention in the workplace to guarantee people’s health while they carry out their work. CCOO and UGT recall that many accidents could be avoided with adequate safety and prevention measures. Xavi, a 19-year-old young man, died while working on April 30 at the CIDAC factory, in Cornellà de Llobregat. The Labor Inspection found “a permanent occupational risk” at the plant and has sanctioned the company with more than 300,000 euros.
20% more occupational accidents with sick leave
Work-related fatalities have been reduced, but work-related accidents with sick leave have increased. 262,355 work accidents with sick leave were recorded, representing an increase of 19.5% compared to the number of claims registered up to the sixth month of 2020, which was marked by a large reduction in activity due to the pandemic.
Of the total claims, 227,665 accidents were recorded in the workplace and 34,690 were claims ‘in route’. The former grew by 17.7%, while the latter increased by 32.6% compared to the same period last year, in which there was much more teleworking than this year to contain the pandemic and, therefore, trips to work centers were reduced.
Minor accidents with sick leave for employees totaled 225,576 until the sixth month of the year, 17.9% more, and serious accidents were 1,812, 9.2% more than a year earlier.
The incidence rate, which shows the accidents produced per hundred thousand workers, makes it possible to compare the extent of the accident rate without the data being altered by increases and decreases in the total number of workers in the labor market. According to this data, the incidence of accidents among wage earners increased by 16%, reaching 206.1 accidents per month for every one hundred thousand workers.
Facing the summer, the Labor Inspectorate launched a campaign to prevent heat stroke from workers most exposed to high temperatures. Companies that fail to protect their employees from the heat face fines of up to 819,780 euros.