Workplace Health and Safety – Benefits of Safety Risk Assessments

The Risk Assessment is an essential part of any Safety Compliance Audit. In a formal Pre-Start Health and Safety Review Report the Risk Assessment (RA) is absolutely required.

The Risk Assessment methodology and format are described by Technical Safety Standards such as ISO 12100:2010 Safety of Machinery- General Principles of Design, Risk Assessment and Risk Reduction. As such, the Risk Assessment is a formal and documented process.

This formal documentation is important as the Risk Assessment provides the basis for a compliant solution. A RA must examine the frequency of human exposure, injury severity potential and the ability of a person to avoid the hazardous motion. These Severity, Frequency and Avoidance criteria are examined for each type of man/machine interaction. These can include setup of the machine, clearing jams, maintenance work and steady state operations.

Risk Assessments should be conducted by Professionals Engineers that are familiar with the Risks Assessment Standards and Safety Standards in their jurisdiction. These Professionals must be licensed to practice, be in good standing and have adequate General and Professional Liability Insurance.

The Risk Assessment provides the Safety Performance Requirements for the required safety system. This becomes the all-important Basis for a Safety Solution that is compliant to our Technical Safety Standards. Compliance to these standards represents the Best Engineering Practice and protects us all.