Accidents Increase in Fish Processing in Iceland Skip to content

Accidents Increase in Fish Processing in Iceland

Fisheries Iceland, the association of fisheries companies in Iceland, demand that fish processing companies which don’t fulfill safety regulations make immediate improvements. While accidents at sea have decreased significantly, accidents in fish processing are up by 70 percent in the past five years.

In the period, the Administration of Occupational Safety and Health has received notifications of 890 accidents in fish processing, most of which occur surrounding machinery that doesn’t fulfill safety regulations, reports.

Many of these accidents are serious, resulting in permanent injuries, including people losing fingers, suffering deep cuts, serious sprains or bone fractures. It’s common that inexperienced employees working temporarily at plants during particularly busy periods suffer injuries.

In spite of repeated requests that conditions be improved, the fisheries companies have turned a deaf ear. Now five of these companies, selected at random, must make improvements by the end of April, otherwise, the unsafe machinery will be shut down.

Fisheries Iceland intends to encourage these companies to comply with the demands. The association’s deputy manager Haukur Þór Hauksson said a change in attitude is needed in the industry, similarly as attitude towards occupational safety has changed onboard ships.

Last year 42 accidents occurred on fishing vessels at sea and they have never been fewer, down from 89 ten years ago. In the meantime, a safety initiative was carried out and regulations made stricter, which appear to have had the desired result.

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