Risk Assessment

Risk Assessment
Learning outcomes
1. Explain the aims and objectives of risk
2. Identify hazards by means of workplace
inspection and analysis of tasks
3. Explain the principles and practice of risk
What is Risk Assessment?
Risk Assessment is a systematic approach to
identify hazards, evaluate risk and incorporate
appropriate measures to manage and mitigate risk
for any work process or activity.
The objectives of risk assessment:
Why we need to do risk assessment?
 Protect Ourselves
RA is key to prevention of accident
 Everyone deserve to go home safely at the
end of the day
Elevate safety awareness & ownership
Aware of hazards, risks and controls and
practicing safe science
University and Faculty Procedures
Compliance with Regulations
Health risks
 Risk assessment is not only concerned
with injuries in the workplace but also needs
to consider the possibility of occupational ill
 Health risks fall into the following four
 Chemical (paint solvents, exhaust fumes)
 Biological (bacteria, pathogens)
 Physical (e.g. noise, vibrations)
 Psychological (e.g. occupational stress).
Health risks
 There are two possible health effects of
occupational ill health.
 They may be acute , which means that they
occur soon after the exposure and are often of
short duration, although in some cases emergency
admission to hospital may be required.
 They may be chronic , which means that the
health effects develop with time. It may take
several years for the associated disease to develop
and the effects may be slight (mild asthma) or
severe (cancer).
The management of risk assessment
Hazard identification
 Hazard identification is the crucial first step of risk
assessment. Only significant hazards, which could result
in serious harm to people, should be identified. Trivial
hazards should be ignored.
 A tour of the area under consideration by the risk
assessment team is an essential part of hazard
identification as is consultation with the relevant
section of the workforce.
 A review of accident, incident and ill-health records
will also help with the identification.
 It is important that unsafe conditions are not
confused with hazards, during hazard identification.
Persons at risk
 Employees and contractors who work full time are
the most obvious groups at risk and it will be a
necessary check that they are competent to perform
their particular tasks.
Members of the public will include visitors, patients,
students or customers as well as passers-by.
 The risk assessment must include any additional
controls required due to the vulnerability of any of these
groups, perhaps caused by inexperience or disability.
 It must also give an indication of the numbers of
people from the different groups who come into contact
with the hazard and the frequency of these contacts.
Evaluation of risk level
Qualitative risk analysis
 During the risk assessment, a judgment is made
as to whether the risk level is high, medium or
 This designation defines a timetable for remedial
actions to be taken thereby reducing the risk.
 High-risk activities should normally be addressed
in days, medium risks in weeks and low risks in
months or in some cases no action will be
 It will usually be necessary for risk assessors to
receive some training in risk level designation.
Quantitative risk analysis
 A quantitative
risk assessment attempts to
quantify the risk level in terms of the likelihood of an
incident and its subsequent severity.
 Clearly the higher the likelihood and severity, the
higher the risk will be.
 The likelihood depends on such factors as the
control measures in place, the frequency of exposure
to the hazard and the category of person exposed to
the hazard.
 The severity will depend on the magnitude of the
hazard (voltage, toxicity, etc.).
 HSE suggests in HSG65 a simple 3
x 3 matrix
to determine risk levels.
Evaluation of risk level
Likelihood of occurrence
Harm is certain or near certain to occur
Harm will often occur
Harm will seldom occur
Severity of harm
Death or major injury (as defined by
3-day injury or illness (as defined by
All other injuries or illnesses
Risk = Severity x Likelihood
High 3
Medium 2
Low 1
Severity level
Major 3
Serious 2
Slight 1
Thus: 6–9 High risk 3–4 Medium risk 1–2 Low risk
What can be done to control risks in the workplace ?
Some measures are : ( from most to least preferred )
 Elimination – eliminate the hazard from the
 Substitution - substituting a hazardous substance
or process with a less hazardous one.
 Engineering controls - installing machine guarding
or enclosing a noisy machine.
 Administrative controls - applying a permit-towork system or lock-out and tag-out procedures.
 PPE - provision and use of these equipment, AND
 SWP – Safe Work Procedures
Hierarchy of Risk Control Measures
Additional Controls
Additional control for risk rated more than 3 or
medium & high risk
Reduce risk to as low as reasonably
Who and When?
Responsible person to implement the
identified control measures and
Timeline for completion  update the risk
assessment upon completion of the additional
control measures