Risk Assessments: What are they and why are they essential?
Posted on 10th Jul, 2015 | By Lorretta Tatham
To ensure health and safety in the workplace, regular risk assessments are vital. With year-on-year figures showing that falls from a height are still a real problem in the workplace, extra special measures need to be taken to ensure these numbers start to fall.
Whether you’re carrying out roof repairs or you’re just looking at accessing a building at a height, starting the project with a risk assessment is key to your safety and your success.
5 steps to safety: Conducting proper risk assessments
By law, businesses are required to carry out risk assessments under Regulation 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations. No matter how tempting it may be to get a job done quickly, and skip the risk assessment, it’s not worth it. The outcome may not only just lead to injury – it could also result in the demise of your business.
The five components considered as vital in any risk assessment, according to the HSE are as follows:
- Identify the hazards. In order to identify hazards you need to understand the difference between a hazard and a risk. While a hazard is something with the potential to cause harm, a risk is the likelihood of that potential harm being realised.
- Ascertain who might be at risk or injured and how that injury might occur.
- Evaluate the risks and decide on appropriate controls and precautions. Equipment solutions and things like PPE are probably things you’ll be considering at this point.
- Implement the proper controls and record all your findings and actions. At this stage it’s vital that all employees who’ll be involved in the work that you’re assessing are made aware of your findings and guidance. All relevant employees should be provided with the key information about the risks involved in their work and the controls that should be put into practice to ensure their safety.
- Review regularly and carry out further risk assessments as and when a significant change takes place.
Swot up on your health and safety skills
When conducting a risk assessment there must be at least one competent individual to help with and advise on health and safety matters. Many of our courses cover health and safety in the workplace – both generally and in relation to certain types of work. It may be worth sending an employee on some of the courses most relevant to the type of work you do so they can act as a point of help and advice.
If you’ve got any questions about risk assessments, why not explore our safety training courses to see how they can help you? We have a wide range of courses available, covering a variety of topics, all of which will cover the all-important risk assessment. If you’re not sure which course is most relevant to your industry, give us a call and we’ll try and help you decide. You can reach our training experts on 01282 615 517.
What questions do you commonly ask yourself when carrying out a risk assessment? Tell us in the comments below or tweet us the details @BrownsLadders