Report reveals top safety risks in 2021

03 February 2021

INSIGHTS FROM comprehensive European Safety Report identifies key focus points for the year ahead.

Global EHS consulting firm DuPont Sustainable Solutions (DSS) has surveyed organisations across a range of industries in Europe, interviewed safety leaders who successfully navigated the crisis and compiled a country-by-country analysis of the safety outlook. The findings, published in a comprehensive report, identify where organisations’ safety efforts most commonly succeed and where they fail. 

Personal involvement in safety activities and the standard of written safety values is generally high across Europe, but the report reveals significant weaknesses in incident investigation (only 46% are fully investigated or followed by corrective actions), training, recognition of safety efforts, off-the-job safety, performance satisfaction and management of psychosocial risks, which only 9% of survey participants say are fully addressed.

The UK Health and Safety Executive highlighted that stress, depression or anxiety accounted for 51% of all work-related ill health cases and 55% of all working days lost due to work-related ill health in 2019/20201. The profound and dramatic changes caused by COVID-19 to the UK working environment seem certain to accelerate the rise incidence or work-related stress, depression or anxiety. 20% of survey respondents from the UK however claimed psychosocial risks were not considered by their organisations. 

The insights from the report highlight five crucial safety actions for safety managers in 2021.

  • Educate on risks: Improve risk perception and empower staff through safety and risk management training and coaching.
  • Make safety positive: Recognise safety efforts and achievements and promote the right actions and behaviours through positive reinforcement.
  • Increase ownership of safety: Upskill capabilities to integrate people who are exposed to risks more in the risk management process.
  • Walk the talk: Improve operational discipline to make incident investigations and corrective actions much more effective.
  • Make safety continuous: Integrate off-the-job and psychosocial risks in safety programmes.

For details on how to address the critical safety issues for 2021, to learn about innovative safety best practices that make organisations more resilient and discover how countries compare across Europe, download our latest report here: