Background Work-related injury is a major concern for business, society and community. Identifying workers’ role in addressing health and safety (H&S) risks in the workplace is key for implementing better harm prevention.
Methodology: The survey was conducted from 2014 to 2017. A total of 8489 workers in the four New Zealand high risk industries including construction, forestry, manufacturing and agriculture were enrolled in the survey. Weighting by business size within sector was applied.
Results Annually, about 16.7% of workers reported experiencing a serious harm incident at work in the last 12 months. The serious harm incidents were statistically higher in workers who disagreed and strongly disagreed that ‘their boss encourages workers to speak up if they fell something is unsafe’ (Odds ratio (OR)= 2.4, 95% Confidence Interval (CI) (1.9 - 2.6) ), ‘their boss encourages workers to come up with ideas for how to make them safer’ (OR=1.5, 95% CI (1.3–1.8)), and ‘When their boss makes decisions about workplace health and safety, workers are always told how their views have been considered’ (OR=1.7, 95% CI (1.4–2.0)). Regression model indicated that decreased serious harm incident and increased workers’ engagement were greatly affected by worker’s age.
Conclusion Work-related incidents were strongly associated with positive workers’ health and safety practice and perception. Younger workers were more likely to experience both higher serious harm incidents and being less involved in H&S at work.
Learning Outcomes The study provides evidence on the importance of workers’ involvement, especially younger workers in improving H&S at work.