At least 1,843 workers died in occupational accidents in Turkey in 2022: İSİG report

A yearly report by the Health and Safety Labor Watch (İSİG) reveals that at least 1,843 workers died in occupational accidents in Turkey in 2022.

According to the report, 108 of those who died were women and 1,735 were men.

The majority of occupational accidents occurred in Turkey’s construction, agriculture and transportation sectors, where dangerous working conditions such as long hours, intensive labor, uninsured work and many other irregularities prevail.

According to the 2022 report published on Friday, more than half of the deaths were due to falls from heights, while the other two main causes were incidents of crushing by heavy objects and electrocution at construction sites.

The main causes of deaths in agriculture are the use of inappropriate transport vehicles, outdated tractors and inadequate accommodation, rest and cleaning areas for workers, as well as tick bites, especially for seasonal agricultural laborers.

The cause of work-related accidents and deaths in the transportation sector were mobbing, long work hours, dangerous roads and vehicles and untreated nutrition and sleep disorders. While 75 percent of the deaths in the transportation sector were due to traffic accidents, heart attacks arising from working conditions were another major cause of death.

“We use the term ‘minimum’ for the deaths covered in this report because around 70 percent of the deaths we identified were reported in the press and 30 percent were reported to us directly. However, there might be other cases we were not informed about,” İSİG said.

The report also points out that the rate of unionization in these sectors is quite low.

According to İSİG, at least 30,546 deaths in work-related accidents have taken place since the Justice and Development Party (AKP) came to power in November 2002.

İSİG General Coordinator Murat Çakır said the reason for the record number of fatalities in work-related accidents has to do with the policies of the AKP, which he said aim to turn Turkey into a source of cheap labor for Europe.

Having a job is more important than ever for Turkish people these days as the country has been suffering from a dramatic increase in the cost of living, with inflation recorded in November at around 80 percent.

People have been suffering from lax work safety standards for decades in Turkey, where workplace accidents are nearly a daily occurrence.

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