Why Do We Have Risk Assessments in the Workplace?

When it comes to risk assessments in the workplace, you're required by law to protect your employees and others from harm. Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, you must follow the guidelines to control any risks in the workplace.

Here at Armadillo Safety, we know a thing or two about health and safety. We’re experts at creating bespoke health and safety consultations, as well as training for all your requirements.

The risk assessment identifies any risks within your building, while also highlighting any hazards that you may need to prevent.

In this blog, we’ll take a closer look into what a risk assessment involves and outline why they are so important.

What does Risk Assessment Involve?

A standard risk assessment looks to identify hazards and any individuals at risk. This includes pinpointing what could cause injury or illness in your business (hazards), deciding how likely it is that someone could be harmed and how seriously (the risk), then taking action to eliminate the hazard, or where this is not possible, control the risk.

Risk assessments should also provide a proper evaluation and assessment of how to remove or reduce the risk, as well as an official recording of findings and preparation of any necessary training.

The full criteria of what a risk assessment involves, including guidelines of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (1999) is available to read on the legislation.gov.uk website.

Identifying and Preventing Hazards

To identify a hazard, you must look around your workplace and be aware of things that could potentially cause harm.

Hazards can arise anywhere in the workplace which is why it’s important to regularly check if your workplace is in a suitable condition. You should know how people are using equipment and machinery. Are they using it correctly or working in disorganised or unsafe ways? Are walkways clean and clutter-free? These are just a few examples of the requirements for a risk assessment.

Your accident book and sick records could also help to identify less obvious hazards. These may include hazards to health, such as working with chemicals, repeated heavy lifting or causes of work-related stress. It’s also important to consider all visitors and contractors, as well as those with disabilities and pregnant people.

Controlling the Risk

Firstly, it’s important to speak to your employees as part of risk assessment. They could see potential hazards or have ideas to reduce the risks involved.

Once you have identified the hazards in your workplace, it’s vital to know who may be harmed and how, as well as the steps you’re putting in place to protect them. Once you know who may be at risk, it’s easier to decide what further actions to take and who should carry them out.

In some cases, it may not be possible to remove the hazard completely. This is when it’s important to assess whether it’s possible to reduce the harm, for example, re-training on the equipment/machinery to use it the correct way, providing extra PPE, or even using alternative tools or materials.

Recording Accidents and Reviewing Changes

When you employ more than 5 people, you are required by law to record who might be harmed and what you’re doing to control the risks involved.

By making a record of accidents and reviewing what changes can be made, you can streamline your risk assessment process.

It’s important to monitor what you are doing to control risks, especially when there are changes to equipment, new staff or ways of working. Records should be up to date with all changes, including when employees highlight a problem or following any accidents.

Control the risk, protect your people.

At Armadillo Safety, our health and safety consultants can provide a hassle-free risk assessment for your workplace or business.

Our trained experts cover the whole South East area from our head office in Kent, and we take great pride in making sure that all of our clients receive the very best levels of customer service and aftercare.

We have experience working within all manner of premises and buildings, so whether you’re looking for a risk assessment for a small office space or a thorough inspection of a large building, our team are more than capable of meeting your requirements. We offer full risk assessments and fire risk assessments throughout London, Kent, Essex and East Sussex.

Get in touch today and let’s have a chat about how we can help you and your business. You can call us directly on 01233 820480 to speak to an advisor, or feel free to contact us via email at info@armadillo-safety.co.uk.