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Published: 30 November 2009

149,000 accidents at work occurred in Finland in 2007

Slightly more than 149,000 accidents at work occurred in Finland in 2007. Around 137,000 of these occurred to wage and salary earners and some 11,900 to self-employed persons (including farmers) (Table 1). The majority, or slightly more than 130,700 of all accidents at work occurred at places of work or while in work traffic, whereas around 18,600 of them occurred while commuting. These numbers also include minor accidents at work which led to a disability lasting less than four days, and for which insurance companies only paid compensation for medical treatment expenses.

The number of accidents at work went up for the third successive year. In 2006, there were slightly over 146,000 accidents at work, whereas the respective number in 2005 was just over 141,000. Most of the increase in the number of accidents at work is due to the full-cost responsibility system of patient care which was introduced at the beginning of 2005. Under this system, medical care facilities must always report the care of a victim of an accident at work to the insurance company. This amendment of legislation pushed up the number of especially minor accidents at work resulting in less than four days’ absence from work, some of which remained unreported in the past. Due to this change, the data for earlier years are not entirely comparable with the total data for 2005-2007. By contrast, the revision had a smaller impact on the number of wage and salary earners' accidents at work resulting in at least four days’ absence from work.

Since reference year 2005, an accident at work has been defined in Statistics Finland’s occupational accident statistics according to the definition used in Eurostat's (the Statistical Office of the European Communities) European Statistics on Accidents at Work (ESAW). According to the definition the statistics contain data on accidents at work which have resulted in a disability of at least four days. Most of the data in this online release are presented using this criterion. The time series have been revised retrospectively to correspond with the definition.

In 2007, a total of 76 persons died at the workplace or while commuting. Of these fatal accidents, 37 occurred to wage and salary earners, eight to self-employed farmers and three to other self-employed persons. In addition, 28 fatal accidents occurred while commuting, of which 25 occurred to wage and salary earners and three to other self-employed persons. The number of fatal accidents at work grew from the year before, for in 2006 a total of 71 persons lost their lives in fatal accidents at work or while commuting.

Of the victims of all fatal accidents at work, 62 were wage and salary earners, eight farmers and six other self-employed persons.

More data on accidents at work in Finland in English will be delivered later on in 2009, on week 51.

Table 1. Number of accidents at work of wage and salary earners, other self-employed persons and farmers by severity in 2007

  Total Accidents at work Commuting accidents
Total 149 365 130 714 18 651
Less than 4 days 76 578 67 141 9 437
At least 4 days 72 711 63 525 9 186
Fatal accidents 76 48 28
Wage and salary earners 137 480 119 260 18 220
Less than 4 days 73 035 63 752 9 283
At least 4 days 64 383 55 471 8 912
Fatal accidents 62 37 25
Self-employed persons 6 090 5 659 431
Less than 4 days 2 515 2 361 154
At least 4 days 3 569 3 295 274
Fatal accidents 6 3 3
Farmers 5 795 5 795
Less than 4 days 1 028 1 028
At least 4 days 4 759 4 759
Fatal accidents 8 8

Source: Occupational accident statistics 2007, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Arto Miettinen 09–1734 2963

Director in charge: Riitta Harala

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Updated 30.11.2009

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Occupational accident statistics [e-publication].
ISSN=1797-9544. 2007. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 23.2.2024].
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