EMPLOYERS must do more to protect staff at work, a union leader said.
The call came from the South West TUC today, Workers' Memorial Day.
Figures from the Health and Safety Executive show 12 people in 2012/3 across the south west lost their lives while at work, with 1,876 people suffering a major injury.
There were also 4,662 over-seven-day injuries to employees. The rate for injury for fatal and major injuries was 81.4 per 100,000 employees, compared with a GB rate of 78.9.
While the figures are down from last year - 15 deaths, 1,996 major injuries - the South West TUC questions whether work is getting any safer.
Regional secretary Nigel Costley said: "Most workers don't die of mystery ailments, or in tragic 'accidents'. They die because an employer decided their safety just wasn't that important a priority.
“Of course, it's good news that figures are down from 2012, but those statistics don't tell the entire story.
"Not only are there fewer people working in construction than then, but these figures refer solely to people killed and injured at work, not those killed or injured as a result of their work.”