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Farming, forestry, and fishing most risky for injury

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The agriculture, forestry, and fishing industry had the highest rate of work-related injury claims in 2018, Stats NZ said.

There were 190 claims per 1,000 full-time equivalent employees (FTEs) in 2018 for the agriculture, forestry, and fishing industry. This was a slight increase on 2017, which had a rate of 187 claims per 1,000 FTEs.

Workers in the agriculture, forestry, and fishing industry were almost twice as likely to be injured than the total rate for all industries. About 25,200 claims were made by workers in this industry, 10.5 percent of claims overall.

“Handling large animals, machinery, tractors, and farm bikes are the main reasons for injuries in this industry,” government injury information manager Scott Ussher said.

The overall rate for all industries in 2018 was 102 claims per 1,000 FTEs, unchanged from 2017.

Provisional 2018 figures are based on work-related injury claims accepted by the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC). Work-related claims can range from muscle strains, sprains and cuts, to more serious, potentially life-threatening, injuries.

The youngest (15–24-year-olds) and oldest (75 years and over) age groups had the highest incidence rates of injury claims in the agriculture, forestry, and fishing industry. The oldest age group had an incidence rate of 230 claims per 1,000 FTEs, while the younger age group had a rate of 226 claims.

“Working people aged 75 or older are a small percentage of the workforce in this industry, but they are more likely to make an injury claim, which may reflect the hard, physical work of farming,” Mr Ussher said.

In 2017, the industry with the highest injury rate was the arts and recreation services industry, with a rate of 202 injuries per 1,000 full-time employees. In 2018, the rate for this industry dropped to 172 injuries per 1,000 full-time employees.

“We expect the arts and recreation services industry to have a high injury rate as it includes workers in professional sports and adventure tourism. The high figures support this, but there has been a significant drop for the 2018 year,” Mr Ussher said.

At the other end of the scale, the information media and telecommunications industry and the financial and insurance services industry had the lowest incidence rates, both with 15 claims per 1,000 FTEs. The low rate is probably because these workers are usually in low-risk environments such as offices.

Source: Stats NZ

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