Health and safety incidents at Aberdeen City Council have increased by almost 50% over the past year, compared to 2016-17.
A total of 671 incidents were reported between April 1 2017 and March 31 2018, up 49% from the 450 of the previous year.
The figures, which will be presented to members of the staff governance committee on Friday, reveal 253 incidents related to physical assault (141 the previous year), 16 incidents involved a fall from height (13 the previous year) and 134 related to slip, trips or falls from the same level (86 the previous year). Two occasions involved an employee trapped by something collapsing (none the previous year), 19 incidents saw staff reported as being struck by a moving vehicle (13 the previous year) and in three instances, staff were injured by animals (two the previous year).
The figures also show a further 541 near-miss incidents were reported in this period, an increase of 40% from the previous year when there were 386.
The report said line managers had stated that in 395 of the 541 near-misses, there was no risk assessment in place for the tasks being undertaken and in 53 cases there was no online investigation report input on the council’s system.
Liberal Democrat councillor Steve Delaney, who sits on the committee, said: “Any incident is obviously concerning and also when it’s suggested that there’s been a rise. What we will be looking for is appropriate risk assessments to be put in place where they don’t already exist and in those cases, for the incidents to be examined so we can improve employee safety.”
The report says the council’s health and safety policy will be reviewed over the course of the next 12 months with a view to ensuring it remains “fit for purpose”.
Councillor Yvonne Alan said: “I share the concerns the report raises, it’s important that we close any gaps in terms of risk assessments. A simple and efficient reporting process is crucial to improve the health and safety culture needed.”
The Reporting of Incidents, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR) puts duties on employers to report certain serious workplace accidents, occupational diseases and near-misses to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
Of the total number of incidents reported by Aberdeen City Council, 29 were reported to the HSE, an increase of eight.