Risk Assessments

You need to make sure that reasonable health and safety precautions are in place to protect your employees and others. To do this, you need to think about what might cause harm to people. You will then need to decide if the precautions already in place are adequate. If they are not, you may need to identify further action to prevent any danger. When done formally, this is known as a risk assessment.

Completing a risk assessment is not about creating huge amounts of paperwork. It is about identifying sensible precautions. The level of detail required should be proportionate to the risk. This means that for smaller organisations presenting few or simple hazards, the risk assessment can be based on informed judgement and reference to appropriate guidance. For larger or complex risks, more in-depth assessment might be necessary. Also, for some hazards (such as, asbestos), you may be required to implement specific precautions. Your assessment should help you identify where this is the case.

Obviously, completing an assessment on its own won’t prevent accidents happening. It is important that you take the precautions you identify as being necessary, making sure that they remain effective for as long as appropriate.

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