British International Investment
1 July 2014

Guidance on preventing fatalities and serious accidents

Guidance for companies in developing countries on preventing fatalities and serious accidents.

Creating jobs is central to our mission as a development finance institution. We want the jobs our investment helps to create to be of good quality – and the conditions of workplaces and employees’ safety is a key part of that.

It’s a particularly important issue in developing countries, as fatalities are considerably higher than in developed countries. In developed countries, annual workplace fatal accident rates are typically between 0.5 and 3.5 per 100,000 workers. By contrast, the ILO estimates an annual
global average rate of around 13 fatalities per 100,000, while rates in the emerging markets of sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and Latin America are estimated at between 17 and 19 per 100,000.

Aside from the human tragedy and wider implications, there are also considerable economic and business costs to accidents. The ILO estimates the cost of workplace accidents to be around 4 per cent of global Gross Domestic Product.

This guide details the causes and potential impacts of fatal accidents on helping prevent the such accidents occurring.


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