Where are the Safest (and Least Safe) Places to Work in Europe?

You might think you can’t move for safety signs and health and safety rules in Britain, but workers in some countries would be glad to have even half of the protections at work that we do, as you’ll see in this blog. So where are the safest and least safe places to work in Europe?

Fatal accidents at work

The lowest rate of fatalities were in the UK, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Germany, whereas workers in Latvia and Lithuania suffer the most workplace fatalities.

Work-related injury

Work-related injuries can have a serious impact on people’s lives and can result in a lot of time off from work. Bulgaria, Hungary, and Poland have the lowest rates of work-related injury that resulted in time off work, while workers in Austria, Switzerland, Finland, and France have the highest number of workers off sick.

It should be noted that the countries with the lowest number of people off sick from work aren’t very wealthy, so it might be that workers can’t afford to be absent because there aren’t adequate systems in place for paid sick leave.

Work-related illness

It isn’t just injuries that can occur at work, occupational illness can occur, depending on the nature of the job someone does. Think things like stress, repetitive strain injury, respiratory issues, and so on. Ireland has the lowest percentage of workers off sick with a work-related illness, followed by Greece, and Lithuania.

Austria has the highest percentage of workers off sick with a work-related illness, closely followed by Poland, and Sweden.

Health and safety risks

A 2010 survey asked workers across Europe whether they thought their health and safety was at risk because of their work. In Latvia, almost half of workers surveyed said it was, and this backs up the findings that the country also has the highest number of fatal accidents at work. Workers in Denmark, the Netherlands, and Ireland felt they were the least at risk.

Attitudes to health and safety, and what is considered to be acceptable vary widely across different countries. This is mostly due to the wealth, or not, of the country, how developed its legislation is, and which industries are the most prevalent within each country’s economy.

But whatever happens with Brexit, maybe avoid seeking employment in Latvia!