Risk Assessment – Part 1

The amount of paperwork in Health & Safety can be overwhelming for a lot of small contractors out there, lots of folks out there gifted with their hands but when it comes to paperwork it can be a challenge but more and more often people are being asked for paperwork before the works start. I get calls from people all the time asking for help with Risk Assessment so I thought that I would try and explain it.

We all do Risk Assessment in our everyday lives, every decision we make is based on Risk Assessment unless you’re one of those num-nuts that spins bottles or tosses coins to make decisions then you most likely use Risk Assessment.

Lets do one that most people do:

A few years ago my friend Paul got burgled, they stole jewelry and cash that he had hidden under the mattress and in the process of the burglary there was a lot of damage done to his home, so he was devastated and decided that this was never going to happen again so he changed his practices and beefed up security with the following.

House Alarm that is monitored, installed a security camera, new front door with a better locking system, he also installed a small safe for his jewelry and decided to put his money into a bank account. Basically Paul done a Risk Assessment which looked at the potential hazards, weighed them up and put controls in place to ensure reduce the chance of someone entering the house also by not having money or jewelry lying around the house there was little incentive for the thieves to enter. If he wanted to put what he was doing on paper it would have looked like the below.

House Burglary

Hazard What can happen and who might it affect Control measures to be put in place to reduce the likelihood or the result of the House Burglary
Cash Stolen Paul will be out of pocket and upset. Financial loss
  • Install House Alarm that is monitored.
  • Installed a security camera.
  • Install new front door with a better locking system
  • Leave lights on when nobody at home
  • Install a small safe for Jewelry
  • Open bank account, no large amounts of cash to be left in the house
Jewelry Stolen Paul’s wife will be upset.

Financial loss and emotional upset

Damage to Property Paul will be upset.

Financial loss


Now what we do in Health & Safety is the exact same except we look at. what can hurt people, how can it hurt them & the level of damage that will be inflicted on them.

In part 2 we will be measuring exactly how dangerous something is and using that also in our Risk Assessment.

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