Published on 02 Oct, 2017

What are the most dangerous professions in the UK? Construction topped the list revealed by provisional statistics from the Health and Safety Executive.

In the UK builders are putting themselves at risk – 39 people died in the construction industry between 2012 and 2013, the majority of them by falling from a height. Building sites contain many of the hazardous conditions present in many of the most dangerous jobs. Workers are outdoors in all sorts of weather conditions, often at great heights and exposed to heavy materials and machinery. In 2016 30 people were fatally injured while working in the construction sector. Here is our list of the most dangerous trades according to statistics:

3. Roofers

Roofers work on a roof

Any time a job involves heights, it raises the level of risk. And while there are a lot more precautions taken to secure roofers these days, there are still a large number of fatalities. When you’re up on the roof, regardless of whether the weather is perfect or it’s raining, you have a chance of falling off of the roof and sustaining serious injuries. 34% of falling injuries when roofing end up being fatalities due to the serious damage done by falling. You’re also dealing with tons of equipment on the roof you can trip on when you’re roofing as well. This is one of the main reasons roofing is so dangerous. Nobody gets work done on their roof unless there’s a problem. Due to this, when roofers get on the roof there’s likely a wide range of missing asphalt shingles, curved ones, and more. If they step in the wrong place and lose their footing, they could fall and severely injure themselves. They can even fall through homes if enough damage has been done in one particular area.

2. Scaffolders

Builder works on a scaffolding

Scaffolding is an essential part of a construction site. It allows workers to reach higher levels and be more stable than standing on a ladder. However, scaffolding can be very dangerous and consistently results in accidents for construction workers. If it’s not put together properly, scaffolding can be very dangerous. All it takes is for one loose bolt or one inadequately supported section for the scaffolding to collapse, putting all workers at serious risk.
Even if scaffolding is erected perfectly, employers should make sure that there are no defective parts such as broken boards. Poor weather can wreak havoc for outdoor workers, and can put those who work with scaffolding at a high risk of injury. Employers shouldn’t make you work in any unsafe conditions and should consider postponing scaffolding work until the weather improves.

1. Tree surgeons

Tree surgery equipment

While being a brain surgeon may only be dangerous for the patient, performing an operation on a tree can be equally deadly. Tree surgery is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world, with a high potential for incident due to the heights involved and the powered machinery which must be used to do the job. The task of working all day logging and cutting down trees with a chainsaw alienates a good chunk of the labor force on pure physicality alone. However, those who become involved with the profession tend to find the role very exciting and continue with it as a long-term career. The last thing you want during a day at work is for a tree to fall on your head – but it’s a daily nightmare for tree surgeons across the globe.

Whatever your career and profession, remember that safety should always be your number one priority. There’s nothing more precious than human life and health and it’s definitely not worth endangering yourself and your health over a job well done.

The best safety lies in fear.

William Shakespeare


Back to the Blog