What is a Risk Assessment?
Risk assessments form the cornerstone of UK health & safety legislation and the requirement for organisations to prepare risk assessments are clearly outlined in several health and safety acts and regulations including the HSE.
A risk assessment is the process in which you identify and evaluate any potential hazards in the workplace. If you employ five or more people, the findings from this risk assessment need to be written down and clearly communicated to your employees.
Risk assessments must be completed by a competent person(s), either internally or externally (consultant – such as Safety Services Direct), as long as the person preparing the risk assessment has suitable knowledge, understanding and practical experience of the subject of the risk assessment. It is recommended that you seek the advice and support of a competent Health and Safety Advisor, such as Safety Services Direct, your advisor can then provide you guidance and assistance in the preparation of your risk assessments; review your documentation or complete the Risk Assessment process on your behalf.
A professionally prepared risk assessment can mean the difference between winning and losing a tender. Your client/main contractor will easily spot a poorly written risk assessment and this will only demonstrate that you do not understand your responsibilities and are prepared to take shortcuts when it comes to health and safety.
What is the Purpose of a Risk Assessment?
- Risk Assessments provide an assessment and evaluation of the risks to those carrying out specific work activities
- Risk Assessments specify the control measures that are needed in order to manage the risks
- Risk Assessments help to manage and control the risks associated with the activity being assessed
- Risk assessment help to protect persons and property
- Risk Assessments assist in the preparation of Method Statements
What is a Method Statement?
A method statement is a written record of the potential hazards involved in certain tasks, the precautions put in place to reduce these risks and how to carry out these workplace activities safely.
A method statement is, fundamentally, a written safe system of work, or series of safe systems of work.
As well as being a legal requirement, you will find that many clients and main contractors will not allow you to start work until you have prepared and provided them with a copy of your method statement and/or risk assessments.