Industrial Accidents: Death

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 12th October 2020.

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Photo of Shabana Mahmood Shabana Mahmood Labour, Birmingham, Ladywood

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many investigations the Health and Safety Executive has carried out into fatal accidents in workplaces since 1 January 2010; and what the average time taken was to complete those investigations.

Photo of Mims Davies Mims Davies The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has completed 1485 investigations into fatal accidents in workplaces since 1 January 2010.

The average time taken in days to complete those investigations is given in the table 1.

Table 1

Based on/Years

2010 to 2014

2015 - 2020

2010 to 2020

Incident Date to Closed Date




Records with Primacy* Date recorded until Closed Date




* Primacy is when the lead for investigating the incident passes to HSE from the police.


The average completion time analysis is based on the difference in days between the incident/primacy date and the date that the investigation case was closed on its operational database rather than the date the investigation was concluded which is not recorded. The administrative practice of closing investigation cases has changed over the past 10 years and has not always been as soon as possible after the completion of the investigation. This explains the difference in the reduction in the time taken to complete an investigation as highlighted in Table 1 in addition to the operational improvements that have been made to reduce the time taken.

The figures were extracted from HSE’s live operational database and provide the picture on the date of extraction i.e. 8 October 2020.

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