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News & Events

[ 30-11-2012 ]
State records rise in number of workplace accidents

KUCHING: The state recorded 367 accidents at workplaces from January to September this year from 340 accidents last year.

Out of this figure, 27 cases resulted in deaths while 311 caused temporary disabilities and 29 resulted in permanent disabilities, revealed State Occupational Safety and Health Department director Mohd Hatta Zakaria yesterday.

Speaking at the launching of ‘Occupational Safety and Health Workshop’ for the Small Medium Enterprise (SME) sector held at Penview Inn here, he said the state contributed about 20 per cent of the 2,214 cases of workplace accidents recorded nationwide.

“There is a rise in the state’s record compared to last year. This figure shows that the awareness of safety and health at workplaces is still very low in the state compared to other states in the country,” he said.

Last year, the state recorded 340 cases – 32 deaths, 270 temporary disabilities and 38 permanent disabilities.

According to him, statistics from Social Security Organisation (Socso) showed that the wood-based industry in the state recorded the highest number of accidents at workplaces followed by agriculture and mining sectors.

He also revealed that Socso recorded 59,897 cases of accidents last year compared to 57,639 cases in 2010, an increase of four per cent.

Until Oct last year, Sosco had paid out RM1.4 billion to insured workers, he revealed.

Among the ways to help reduce accidents at workplaces, he explained, were to implement effective occupational safety and health (OSH) programmes and developing OSH teams in workplaces.

This would lead to reduced absenteeism, lower turnover and higher productivity of the company thus increasing profit of the company, he said.

He said according to statistics from the International Labour Organisation (ILO), one worker dies from accident or disease related to workplace every 15 seconds, and at the same span of time, 160 workers are hurt in occupational accidents while 317 million accidents happen in workplaces.

And every day, 6,300 workers die from accidents at workplaces or diseases related to their work, he said, adding more than 2.3 million deaths were recorded yearly.

In developing countries including Malaysia, accidents resulting in deaths in workplaces were five to six times higher compared to developed countries, he added.