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Friday, 7 December, 2001, 10:25 GMT
Christmas hangovers cost firms 110m
Over-indulgence at Christmas parties will cause two million people to take time off work this year, according to a new survey.

Researchers suggest the cost to business of workers staying home to recover from heavy drinking and over-eating will reach 110m.

Hangover facts
Two million workers will take time off
110m cost to business
Men drink 11 glasses of wine
Women drink five glasses of wine
Southerners most likely to be sick
Under-35s worst offenders
Men are the worst offenders, drinking their way through an average of five pints of lager or 11 glasses of wine at parties. Women knock back an average of five glasses of wine.

Report author Dr Doug Wright said: "With statistics like this it is not surprising there are so many people taking time off work because they have a hangover."

The survey of 600 people also discovered one in five workers will take three or more days off because of hangovers over the Christmas period.

Workers in London and the South East were most likely to call in sick, closely followed by northerners.

But in the Midlands only one in 50 people would take time off because of seasonal excesses.

The survey, by Norwich Union Healthcare, showed the under-35s were three times as likely to over-indulge as their older colleagues.

Dr Wright said: "Christmas is one of Britain's most unhealthy times of year."

But despite the party ethic, workers were less likely to get the opportunity to offend this year.

Most were only planning to attend one work-related bash, partly because of the effects of the economic downturn.

Others may be put off by the potential impact on their careers.

Blame the drink

Some people have seen colleagues fired at the seasonal event.

According to a survey of 1,000 workers by jobs.telegraph.co.uk, 9% had handed in their notice.

Nearly half of those questioned had insulted their boss and a quarter of them had demanded a pay rise while partying.

photocopier
Indecent exposure: Photocopiers are not for sitting on
Other misdemeanours include throwing punches (54%), or canoodling with colleagues (33%).

Surveyors for drinks manufacturer Matthew Clark met a party-going employee who admitted ending up in hospital after sitting bare-cheeked on a photocopier and breaking the glass.

He lost his end of year bonus as a result.

Another said he was sick on the dance floor in front of his boss and his wife after too much food and drink.

"She promptly skidded, went flying, and ended up at casualty with a broken wrist," he said.

See also:

23 Nov 01 | England
Party survey reveals office antics
17 Dec 00 | UK
All I want for Christmas...
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