Lockdown craze for DIY and gardening see thousands in hospital

Lockdown craze for DIY and gardening see thousands in hospital after accidents and injuries

  • More than 5,600 in England were admitted to hospital in powered tool incidents
  • Another 2,700 needed treatment after accidents with non-powered tools
  • A further 349 were admitted to hospital after being injured by lawnmowers 

Thousands needed hospital care after sustaining injuries while taking part in popular lockdown activities, figures suggest.

Data from NHS Digital for 2020/21 shows that more than 5,600 in England were admitted to hospital after coming into contact with a powered tool, with 2,700 needing treatment after an accident with non-powered tools such as a hammer or a saw. 

A further 349 were admitted after being injured by lawnmowers and 5,300 after falling from playground equipment –including eight over the age of 90.

New pets were also a feature of lockdown, with 7,386 admitted to hospital after being bitten by a dog. Others turned to cooking, with 2,243 ending up on wards with burns from hot drinks, food and cooking oils.

Data from NHS Digital for 2020/21 shows that more than 5,600 in England were admitted to hospital after coming into contact with a powered tool

Rat bites contributed to 47 hospital admissions and 60 people were admitted after coming into contact with a venomous spider.

Four people needed to be admitted after coming into contact with a scorpion.

Meanwhile, a 90-year-old woman was admitted to hospital after being bitten or struck by crocodile or alligator.

Some people turned their hands to improving their culinary expertise.

Many expressed gratitude for the sunny weather during the first lockdown, but 153 people were admitted to hospital with sun burn.

Rat bites contributed to 47 hospital admissions and 60 people were admitted after coming into contact with a venomous spider

Meanwhile ‘overexertion and strenuous or repetitive movements’ contributed to 12,355 hospital admissions.

The figures only represent the people who were admitted to hospital during 2020/21 and many more accidents would have been dealt with by A&E doctors and GPs and people sent home to tend to their wounds.

Many of the accidents and injuries reduced compared to the previous year as others spent more time indoors and less time engaging in their usual pursuits.

Hospital admissions for one type of injury increased substantially.

The number of people who needed help after being struck by lightning rose from three cases in 2019/20 to 18 in 2020/21 – which some would say provides more evidence that 2020 was a year like no other.

A spokesperson from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) told the PA news agency: ‘The publication of hospital admission figures always serves to remind us of the breadth of accident types that can result in an injury so severe that admission to hospital is required.

‘In among the stranger entries in the database are some worrying trends that serve to highlight the accident challenges that we face.

‘Accidents are preventable.

‘In the midst of the excitement of Christmas, particularly for those who were not able to be with their loved ones last year, we’d urge people to spare a thought for safety so the celebrations are not cut short by an accident that could have been prevented.’

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