6324.0 - Work-Related Injuries, Australia, 2009-10 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 13/12/2010   
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For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.


The Work-Related Injuries Survey provides detailed information about people who worked at some time in the last 12 months who experienced a work-related injury or illness during the 12 month period prior to enumeration. A work-related injury is defined as any injury, illness or disease which first occurred in the last 12 months, where a person suffers either physically or mentally from a condition that has arisen out of, or in the course of, employment. Work-related injuries or illnesses resulting in death are excluded.

The data collected in the survey includes the type of injury or illness experienced, how it occurred, the number of days or shifts absent, whether financial assistance or workers compensation was sought, whether it was received and information about OH&S training and whether this was undertaken prior to the injury or illness occurring. The data collected is cross-classified by a range of demographic characteristics such as age, sex, marital status, country of birth, standard education and income information, as well as labour force characteristics.

The Work-Related Injuries Survey collects information about the following three populations:

  • People aged 15 years and over who worked at some time during the last 12 months;
  • People aged 15 years and over who worked at some time during the last 12 months and experienced a work-related injury or illness in that period; and
  • People aged 15 years and over who were employed in the reference week.

For a complete list of data items collected in this survey see Appendix- Populations and data items list.
The Work-Related Injuries Survey is now conducted every 4 years as part of the Multipurpose Household Survey (MPHS).


The most recent Work-Related Injuries Survey was conducted throughout Australia during the 2009-10 financial year. It was a component of the 2009-10 MPHS, collected as a supplement to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Labour Force Survey (LFS). Data from the survey is released approximately six months after the completion of enumeration i.e. during December, in the publication Work-Related Injuries, Australia (cat. no. 6324.0).


The number of completed interviews for the Work-Related Injuries Survey (after taking into account scope and coverage exclusions) was 28,554, with just over 1000 people reporting a work related injury. The response rate was approximately 88%. See the Explanatory Notes (paragraph 10) for more information. The exclusion of people living in very remote parts of Australia has only a minor impact on aggregate estimates, except for the Northern Territory where these people account for around 23% of the population.

Estimates from the survey are subject to sampling and non-sampling errors. The MPHS was designed primarily to provide estimates at the Australian level. Broad estimates are available for states and territories, though users should exercise caution when using estimates at this level because of the presence of high sampling errors. Relative Standard Errors (RSEs) for all estimates in the publication are available on the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au> released in spreadsheet format as an attachment to this publication, Work-Related Injuries, Australia (cat. no. 6324.0). As a guide, selected estimates and RSEs are presented in the Technical Note.


The following are new or modified data items available in the Work-Related Injuries survey for the 2009-10 year: Remoteness Areas; Number of days of the week/shifts usually worked in job where most recent work-related injury or illness occurred; Whether received any formal training in OH&S risks in workplace at any time prior to work-related injury or illness occurred; Whether received formal training in OH&S risks in the workplace in current or most recent job (for people who did not experience a work-related injury or illness in the last 12 months); and Type of OH&S training undertaken. For a more detailed list of categories available for these data items, see Appendix- Populations and data items list.

Note industry data is now classified according to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 2006 (cat. no. 1292.0); and Occupation data is now classified according to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupation, (ANZSCO) First Edition, 2006 (cat. no. 1220.0).

Key changes made to the collection methodology of the Work-Related Injuries Survey since 2000 are reflected in the 2005-06 and 2009-10 publications. For more information on changes to the survey see Chapter 21.15 of Labour Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 6102.0.55.001).

Data on occupational injuries and diseases are principally compiled from information supplied by Commonwealth, States and Territories Work Cover (WC) authorities by SafeWork Australia. The coverage of the ABS survey of work-related injuries is broader than for the administrative dataset and includes: injuries sustained by all categories of employed workers; injuries that have been claimed under workers' compensation; and injuries that have not been claimed under workers' compensation.


Work-Related Injuries, Australia (6324.0) contains a detailed Explanatory Notes, Technical Note and Glossary that provide information on terminology, classifications and other technical aspects associated with these statistics.

Seasonally adjusted and trend estimates are not produced. The estimates are based on information collected over the financial year. However seasonal weighting is not undertaken.

Further commentary is available through articles and data published in other ABS products, including:


The Work-Related Injuries publication is released electronically via the ABS website as a PDF publication, along with spreadsheets containing tables and associated RSEs.

Data is also available on request. Note that detailed data can be subject to high RSEs and, in some cases, may result in the data being confidentialised.

An expanded confidentialised unit record file (cat. no. 6324.0.55.001) will be produced for this survey and is expected to be released in February 2011.

For further information about these or related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Centre on 1300 135 070 or the Labour Market Section in Canberra on (02) 6252 7206 or by facsimile on (02) 6252 5066, or by email to <labour.statistics@abs.gov.au>.