The latest statistics from Alberta show a 20-year trend of improved workplace safety.
The rate of Alberta workers being hurt on the job dropped in 2013, according to information provided by the Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB). In fact, the lost-time claim (LTC) rate is now at an all-time recorded low: 1.34 per 100 person-years.
In addition, the disabling injury rate (DIR) decreased last year to 2.67 per 100 person-years from 2.72 in 2012.
The DIR dropped in some of Alberta’s key sectors last year: construction, manufacturing and oil and gas development. The DIR combines information on workers who couldn’t work because of their injury or had their duties modified due to workplace injury or disease.
Despite safety improvements, there were 188 workplace fatalities in 2013. More than one-half of the fatalities resulted from occupational disease. In some cases, the worker may have been exposed to the disease decades ago.
While the rate of injury went down, the number of disabling injury claims rose slightly as Alberta’s workforce grew by 2.9 per cent to 2.1 million. In 2013 there were 54,140 disabling injury claims, the combination of lost-time claims and modified work claims, an increase of two per cent from 53,081 claims in 2012.
“I’m pleased to see a steady improvement in workplace safety. The hard work of industry, employers, workers, safety associations and government is paying off. That said, there are still far too many workplace deaths. I want all Alberta workers to get home safely at the end of the day," said Minister of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour Kyle Fawcett.