Fatalities and occupational accidents in forestry work
The forestry sector is one of the most accident-prone industries. Most accidents occur during timber harvesting. It is important to survey the number of accidents that occur in forests in order to improve work safety, health and safety and the training of workers.
In 2017, there were 320 occupational accidents per 1,000 full-time workers in forestry operations and companies. Approximately one-third of these accident victims were unfit for work for periods exceeding three days of work. The Suva raises awareness among the affected actors through its “Risikoverhalten Forst” (“Forest Risk Behaviour”) campaign with the goal of reducing the number and severity of occupational accidents. Particular attention is given to trainees. Accidents involving private individuals who occasionally carry out wood-related work are not included in this chart. Many forest owners harvest their wood with their own conventional equipment, particularly in small-scale private forests. Work safety must also be further improved here too through targeted awareness-raising among forest owners and through the improved training of workers.
Since the definition of “accident” differs from country to country, it is not possible to make direct comparisons.
All employees of forestry operations and companies are required by law to be insured against occupational accidents and non-occupational accidents with Suva (Swiss National Accident Insurance Fund). Forestry operations and companies report all accidents immediately to the Suva. In turn, the Suva is required by law to provide data on accidents for the statistics of all Swiss accident insurers on an ongoing basis.