Construction Industry


Total number of employees in Australia Incident rate of serious claims /1000 employees Overall industry incident rate / 1000 employees Median time lost /serious claim Median payment increase / serious claim
1,000,000 22 13.5 4 weeks $7,100

Construction Industry Overview

The construction industry employees close to a million people Australia wide, in 2007/08 there were 14,410 serious claims made by workers arising from accidents in the industry.

This accounted for 11% of all serious claims equating to 39 serious claims per day and almost 22 serious claims per 1000 employees. Construction finished 2007/08 recording the fourth highest incidence rate of all industries.

Building construction as a segment of this industry had the highest number of employees (30%) and the lowest number of serious claims (20%) giving it the lowest incidents rate of all groups in the construction industry of just 14.7 serious claims per 1000 employees.

The highest incidence rates for serious claims were lodged by the non-building construction and building structure services groups with respective incidence rates of 41.3 and 33 per 1000 employees. The occupations with the highest claims in this group included carpentry and joinery tradespersons, construction and plumbing assistants, electrical and electronics tradespersons

The most common types of injury causing serious claims were sprains and strains causing 77% of the total claims. The most common causes were non-powered hand tools accounting for 25% of all claims, ladders and scaffolding accounting for almost 10% of all claims.

The construction industry has improved it’s safety records between 2002 and 2007/8, though overall there has been an increase in serious claims reported by about 10% to a total of 14,410 serious claims made, the overall incidence serious injuries rates per 1000 employees has dropped on average across all sectors by 23%.

Compensated fatalities have increased by 10% over 2002-03 to 2006-07 to 53 compensated fatalities. The construction industry employs 7% of all workers but is responsible for 20% of all deaths in the workplace.

Common causes of deaths between 2005-06 to 2007-08 were long term contact with chemicals or substances being the most common cause accounting for 45 deaths other causes include vehicle accidents, falls from height, being hit by falling objects and contact with electricity.

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