Agriculture, fishing, forestry still leading workplace injury statistics

Agriculture, fishing and forestry are still leading workplace injury statistics, and the rates have risen since 2017.

Newly released figures from Statistics New Zealand revealed there were 190 injuries per 1000 full-time equivalent employees in the agriculture, fishing and forestry industries in 2018.

That's up from 2017, where the rate was 187 claims per 1000 full-time equivalent employees.

"Handling large animals, machinery, tractors, and farm bikes are the main reasons for injuries in this industry," government injury information manager Scott Ussher said in a statement.

The figures were based on ACC claims for 2018 and the injuries ranged from muscle strains, sprains and cuts, to potentially life-threatening.

It's not the first time farming has topped the list of most accident-prone industries. Figures released in January showed more people died in the agriculture sector than any other.

Worksafe chief executive Nicole Rosie said at the time farmers need to re-think how they look at risks to their business.

"A lot of farmers think [the biggest risk] is going out of financial business. However, the biggest risk is serious harm or death," she said.

"You can restart a farm if you go out of business but, if you die, the family now has a great tragedy, has lost the main income earner and would also find it hard to start a new farming operation."

The industry with the lowest injury rates was finance and insurance services.

The top five most dangerous industries:


Agriculture, forestry and fishing

Arts and recreation



Electricity, gas, water and waste services

The top five least dangerous:


Financial and insurance services

Information media and telecommunications

Professional, scientific and technical services

Administrative and support services

Education and training