Risk Assessment in health and safety

risk assessment in health and safety

risk assessment in health and safety

Reduce risks

They key to health and safety is found in this section.

It’s called risk assessment and it’s not as complicated as you think. Put it this way – you do it every day more than once, usually without knowing it. To find out more about risk assessment and to be able to make a risk assessment of your own area of responsibility, read this section.

Make a risk assessment of your own area of responsibility in health and safety

Perhaps the most important responsibility of managers in health and safety today is something called ‘risk assessment’. It is not as complicated as it might sound. This section is about carrying out risk assessments.

What is risk assessment?
Consider this scenario.

You have to cross a busy road. To do it safely you look both ways for the vehicles on the road. You estimate their speed and how much time you think you need to cross. You then cross, walking not running, checking all the time that nothing is coming.

What you have done here is ‘risk assessment’. And you probably do this many times a day – driving your car to work, walking down the stairs in the morning, cooking your dinner at night and so on.

What you did when crossing the road was basically three things:
1. You identified the hazards on the road – the vehicles.
2. You estimated the risk – should I cross now or later?
3. You adopted ‘controls’ to ensure there was no accident as you crossed – you walked, checking all the time nothing was coming. In effect, these controls reduced the risks.
This is risk assessment
1 identify hazards,
2 estimate risks,
3 take adequate controls to reduce risks.