Risk assessments: What, why, how to reduce risks in the workplace

Risk assessments promote safety in the workplace as a means for scrutinizing a process or price of equipment to identify hazards and to eliminate or mitigate them. Each risk assessment has four phases and five applicable standards to consider. This tutorials can help identify and classify hazards in your workplace.

01/17/2011


Risk assessments promote safety in the workplace as a means for scrutinizing a process or price of equipment to identify hazards and to eliminate or mitigate them. Tutorial information is available on related topics.

Risk assessments: Following these simple steps helps make safety a habit – Making safety a priority just makes good business sense. But is it really a habit at your place? The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) thinks it should be. Over the past year or so the agency has shown renewed interest in workplace safety—and also in one of the primary tools available for promoting it: the risk assessment. Every risk assessment, no matter how many times it is performed, has four phases, each discussed here.

Risk assessments: Use consensus standard to help identify, evaluate, mitigate hazards – Risk assessments are among the best tools available for plants to use to promote workplace safety. They are a means for scrutinizing a process or piece of equipment to identify hazards, determine the severity of those hazards, and eliminate them or mitigate them to a tolerable level. The interpretive nature of risk assessments, and the specialized knowledge required to do them adequately, makes them difficult to perform. Here are five major standards which currently are associated with risk assessment, and one more you should know.

Risk assessment: How do I weight manufacturing hazards that I’ve found? - The risks involved with a given machine or process depends on what undesirable things can happen, and how likely they are. Predicting, identifying and weighing the risks are each difficult since quantitative data is unavailable and measurements are often impossible to make. A risk analysis tutorial explains how to weight hazards.

Manufacturing risk mitigation, re-assessment, and the future – The first pass at making a risk assessment looks at the machine in its raw condition—without interlocks, guards, and other safety features. This allows us to clearly identify the possible failure conditions, and how likely they are to rise on their own. The second step is to set an acceptable safety level depending on the failure mode’s risk level. Reducing the risk levels altogether is the final step in this process.



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