Singapore saw fewer workplace fatalities in H1 2019 , with 17 cases recorded versus 23 in H2 2018, according to the National Workplace Safety and Health Statistics Report released yesterday (30 September).

However, while this was recorded as the lowest absolute number of workplace fatalities since 2012,  non-fatal injuries such as slips, trips, and falls (STF), and machine-related incidences remained a top cause of both major and minor injuries.

For instance, there was an 8% increase STF-related minor injuries from H1 2018 (1,630) to H1 2019 (1,757).

As for machine-related incidences, these came in as the second most common cause of major and minor injuries. In particular, there was a rise in the number of such major injuries year-on-year (35 in H1 2018 vs 41 in H1 2019).

At the same time, the number of minor injuries related to machinery spiked from 956 cases in H1 2018, to 1,066 in H2 2019.

These instances aside, in relation to occupational diseases (OD) which could also affect white-collar workers, an 11% drop was observed in the number of these diseases -  from 295 in H1 2018 to 263 in H1 2019.

The top three ODs in the past half included work-related musculoskeletal disorders (144 cases in H1 2019 vs 160 in H1 2018), noise-induced deafness (90 cases vs 102 cases) which saw a drop, and occupational skin diseases which saw a slight increase (23 cases vs 21 cases).

Industries with little improvement in performance - construction, manufacturing, and transportation & storage

According to the report, the performance of the construction and manufacturing industries "did not improve significantly", and were, in fact, the top two contributors of fatal and major injuries in H1 2019 (66 cases collectively).

As for the transportation & storage industry, the number of fatal and major injuries rose from 22 in H1 2018 to 35 in H1 2019.

That said, a range of other industries have also observed a more even spread of major injuries:

Wholesale and retail trade: 21 in H1 2019 vs 15 in H1 2018

Professional services: 10 in H1 2019 vs 5 in H1 2018

Accommodation and food services: 34 in H1 2019 vs 16 in H1 2018

View the full statistics in the infographic below:



Lead image and Infographic / MOM