The direct costs of occupational accidents and diseases in the EU were for the year 1992 estimated at ECU 27 billion. However, this figure represents only the tip of the iceberg. The indirect costs are much higher. Most of the costs are paid by the public sector and the employees rather than the companies. This fact is the reason why effective preventive measures are needed. For years the instruments have been legislation, control, information and training. These are all useful preventive tools and they can be further developed and improved in the future. However, if a real visible reduction in the injury rates is to be achieved, it is necessary to develop new instruments which affect the companies planning and design processes in a positive way. “Economic incentives” is such a tool.