Annual number of work-related accidents drops for first time since 1995 | Tunisia News Gazette

Annual number of work-related accidents drops for first time since 1995

The annual number of work-related accidents has dropped below 40 thousand accidents in 2016 for the first time since the introduction of the damage resulting from work accidents and occupational diseases compensation scheme in 1995.

The number of accidents recorded during the past year reached 38,045 against 40,100 in 2015, down 1.5% and 22% compared to 2012.

Of the accidents recorded in 2016, 35,900 are accidents at the workplace while 2,145 are commuting accidents.

According to the Director of Occupational Risk Prevention at the National Health Insurance Fund (CNAM), Rafik Dakhli, this annual report on the indicators of work accidents and occupational diseases for 2016 revealed that Sfax is still the governorate that has the highest rate of accidents (17.2%).

“Then come the governorates of Ben Arous (12.6%), Sousse (10.3%) and Tunis (10.2%),” he added, explaining that these regions are major industrial centres.

The same report shows that the mechanical engineering sector ranks first in terms of work accidents (3,388 accidents in 2016) followed by construction and public works (3,329 accidents in 2016).

“The food industry occupies the third place (3,218 accidents) followed by the textile sector (3136 accidents) and building and public works sector (2,704 accidents)”, said Dakhli, adding that 21% of accidents have affected women.

Decrease of fatal work-related accidents

According to the same source, fatal work-related accidents have dropped from 172 in 2015 to 151 accidents in 2016 (98 accidents at the workplace and 53 commuting accidents).

Falling people (26.5%), electrocution (11.2%) and falling objects (5.1%) were the main causes of these workplace injuries recorded in 2016.

These accidents were recorded, in particular, in the building and public works sector which took the first place with a rate equal to 30.7%.

This sector is followed by that of agriculture and fishing with a rate of 25.6%, said the official, explaining that this is due to the drowning cases recorded in 2016.

Rise of occupational diseases

The number of occupational diseases recorded in 2016 reached 1,583 against 1,499 cases in 2015, according to the report.

Bone and muscle disorders were the most recorded occupational diseases (1,145 cases), followed by diseases of the respiratory system (161 cases) and occupational deafness (123 cases).

According to the report, the textile and clothing sector registered 929 occupational diseases, while 221 cases were reported in the sectors of mechanical and electrical industries.

In addition, Dakhli said the significant reduction in work-related accidents is due to the fact that prevention programmes have been implemented by the National Health Insurance Fund.

Thus, 3,000 field visits were conducted in 2016 by more than 20 experts in prevention and occupational safety.

As part of its anticipatory interventions, the Fund has taken a major interest in institutions with the highest rate of workplace accidents. It assisted them in the diagnosis of possible risks incurred by the staff, he pointed out.

In this context, the CNAM has set a list of 100 institutions most affected by workplace accidents in 2016.

These institutions operate in various sectors and are based in all regions of the Republic. They employ nearly 40,000 workers and have registered 2,600 accidents.

To prevent these accidents, the CNAM offers credits and grants to finance prevention and occupational safety projects with easy payment.

The overall number of institutions receiving these credits has reached 194.

Source: TAP News Agency

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