Alberta cuts workplace injuries 2.7 per cent

Push for safer workplaces saves WCB more than $20 million

Alberta’s push to improve safety in the workplace seems to be paying off, as the province said work-related injuries are steadily decreasing.

In 2003 there were 2.8 lost-time claims per 100 person-years, down from 3.0 in 2002. This number represents:

•1,023 fewer lost-time claim injuries and an estimated $20 million in direct annual Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) claims cost savings;

•an estimated $1.66 million in WCB health service industry claim cost savings (health service industries refers to hospital/acute centres, home support services, health units, rehabilitation services for the disabled and long-term care facilities); and

•the lowest rate since the province began recording lost-time claims in 1991.

There were 36,575 workplace injuries and claims serious enough for workers to miss at least one day of work, a decrease of 2.7 per cent or 1,023 fewer injuries from 2002.

About 50 per cent of injuries were strains, sprains and tears and 25 per cent were due to improper movement when pulling, pushing, lifting and carrying. More than 25 per cent were back injuries.

The province has put together a report, entitled Occupational Injuries and Diseases in Alberta 2003 Summary. It is available online in PDF format at It includes information on Alberta Human Resources and Employment Workplace Health and Safety initiatives, a provincial summary of lost-time claim rates by industry sector, demographics of injured workers and lists of injury types.

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