More than 124,000 days of productivity were lost in Wanganui because of injuries in the past reported financial year, new ACC figures show.

Newly released ACC injury comparison reports provide communities across the country with a comprehensive picture of local injury rates and trends, and are designed to help prioritise and plan local injury prevention initiatives.

The most common injuries in Wanganui occurred at home, and at $9.9million, they were also the most expensive, 2011/12 financial year data shows.

At 31.7 per cent, loss of balance was the most common cause of accidents in the region, while walking or running was the most common pre-accident activity.


The Wanganui district's ACC injury claim rate was slightly below the national average and had trended downwards over the past five years.

Wanganui Hospital emergency department Dr Athol Steward said that while the accident and emergency departments were presented with a wide range of accident-related injuries, light industrial and work-related injuries were reasonably common.

Sports injuries tended to follow seasonal trends, he said.

"In the rugby season and the skiing season sport related-injuries are common."

Fractured wrists and hips were also common from elderly Wanganui residents having falls around the home, he said.

ACC insurance and prevention services general manager John Beaglehole said Wanganui-based ACC injury prevention programmes included working with Sport Whanganui to get the local community active.

"ACC is also engaging with various stakeholders to promote safety for young drivers, another key focus area for the Wanganui area."

Nationwide, 8,843,795 days of productivity were lost because of injuries in the 2011/12 financial year.


Mr Beaglehole said the reports provided a wealth of information, from overall ACC claims rates to data for priority areas, such as work, falls, assaults, motor vehicles and water sports.

"We're really keen to share our data and make the best possible use of it. ACC has a big role to play in helping to prevent injuries, but so do lots of other parties, including government agencies, local councils and non-government organisations."

The profiles were designed to be used by community organisations, in conjunction with ACC community injury prevention consultants, to help build local injury prevention plans.

"Each community has its own unique social and geographical factors and issues to address - the reports are a tool to help them take positive action."

The ACC data was complemented by statistics sourced from the police, New Zealand Transport Agency and Statistics New Zealand - enabling a detailed picture of where and how injuries were happening.

"For example, ACC doesn't collect information as specific as what street a vehicle-related injury happens on.

"But by matching our claims data with NZTA data, we can show details such as the cost of injuries on particular streets," Mr Beaglehole said.

By the numbers

57.8 per cent of Wanganui injuries occurred at home, costing $7.3million.

15.7 per cent occurred during sport and recreation, costing $2.9million.

6.7 per cent occurred on a road or street, costing $5.6million.

6.1 per cent occurred at a commercial/service location, costing $2.3million.

5.9 per cent occurred at school, costs unavailable.

- Source: ACC