Pa. Gov. Reports 4-Year Low in Workplace Injuries

Gov. Edward Rendell announced last week that Pennsylvania’s workplace injuries in 2004 were down to 93,566, the lowest since 2000 when there were 82,676 workplace injuries. The number was down more than 5,500 from 2003. Work related fatalities dropped by 10 in 2004 to 130. The governor also noted that June has been proclaimed “Workplace Safety Month” throughout the commonwealth.

“I am encouraged by the decrease in injuries and fatalities on the job,” said Rendell. “It shows that this administration’s efforts to improve workplace safety in Pennsylvania are keeping employees safer on the job. While this news is encouraging, we must continue to decrease the number of workplace injuries. Every Pennsylvanian has the right to be safe at work.”

“L&I has proven, successful programs that encourage employers to make workplace safety a number one priority,” said Labor and Industry Secretary Stephen Schmerin. “It is good to see that our efforts translate into improved safety across the commonwealth. We are dedicated to improving safety, and like the governor, we want to see workplace fatalities and injuries continue to decline.”

More than 6,100 businesses in Pennsylvania are taking advantage of the state’s certified Workplace Safety Committee program. The program offers a 5 percent discount on workers’ compensation premiums to any company that creates and maintains a certified Workplace Safety Committee.

Currently more than 840,000 employees are covered by such committees and the state’s employers have reportedly saved almost $200 million in workers’ comp premiums as a result of their participation in this program.

“Employers who have certified workplace safety committees not only save money, but report fewer accidents and injuries,” said Rendell. “The program is a win-win for businesses and employees alike. The employees have safer working conditions, while the business owner reduces operating costs.”