Understanding the Hierarchy of Risk Controls: A Guide for Workplace Safety

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Workplace safety should always be a top priority for businesses across all industries. As an employer, you have a legal and moral obligation to provide a safe and healthy working environment for your employees, however, accidents and incidents do happen and can lead to injury, damage, and even loss of life. That’s where the hierarchy of risk controls comes into play.

The hierarchy of risk controls is a systematic approach to minimising and controlling workplace hazards. It offers a clear roadmap for employers to follow in order to create a safer work environment, reducing the likelihood and consequences of potential hazards. Risk = Likelihood x Consequence.

Safety Measures in the Hierarchy of Risk Controls

​In any workplace, safety should always be a top priority. Employers have a responsibility to protect their employees from harm and create a safe working environment. One way to accomplish this is by implementing a hierarchy of controls, which outlines the most effective strategies for reducing risks and ensuring safety.

The first step in this hierarchy is the elimination of risk. This means identifying and removing any hazards or potential dangers from the workplace. By eliminating the source of risk altogether, employers can greatly reduce the chance of accidents occurring. For example, if there is a faulty piece of machinery that poses a risk to workers, it should be immediately repaired or replaced to ensure their safety.

If complete elimination of risk is not possible, the next step is substitution. This involves replacing a hazardous material, equipment, or process with a safer alternative. This can significantly reduce the likelihood of accidents and injuries. For instance, if a toxic chemical is being used in a manufacturing process consider if it can be substituted with a less harmful substance to protect the workers.

However, if elimination or substitution is not feasible, employers need to focus on implementing other risk controls that reduce the consequences of potential accidents. This includes strategies such as engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment (PPE). These measures help to minimise the severity of injuries or damage in case an accident does occur.

Administrative Controls: How to Enhance Workplace Safety Through Policies and Procedures

​In any work environment, ensuring the safety and well-being of employees is of utmost importance. One effective way to achieve this is through the implementation of administrative controls. These controls refer to the policies and procedures put in place to control risk, reduce hazards, and minimize the consequences of accidents or incidents in the workplace.

Administrative controls involve establishing clear guidelines and protocols that outline the expected behaviors and actions of employees in terms of safety. This can include procedures for incident reporting, emergency response plans, and regular safety training programs. By establishing these protocols, organisations can effectively control risk and reduce the likelihood of accidents or injuries occurring.

Another aspect of administrative controls is the identification and reduction of hazards within the workplace. Hazards can range from physical risks such as slippery floors or faulty machinery, to psychological risks such as workplace stress or bullying. By conducting regular inspections and risk assessments, organisations can identify and eliminate these hazards, ensuring a safer work environment for their employees.

Moreover, administrative controls focus on reducing the consequences of accidents or incidents that do occur. A large part of this is related to providing appropriate training and education to employees. Training programs should focus on hazard recognition, safe work practices, and the proper use of protective equipment. By equipping employees with the necessary knowledge and skills, organisations can empower them to identify potential hazards and take the necessary precautions to minimise the risk. Additionally, supervisors and managers must lead by example and enforce safety protocols and practices in the workplace. Consistent reinforcement of safety procedures encourages a culture of safety and reminds employees of the importance of following guidelines to eliminate hazards before they occur.

IOSH Managing Safely 

​The IOSH Managing Safely course is a valuable training program that offers numerous benefits for individuals and organisations alike. One of the key advantages of this course is its focus on reducing consequences related to safety incidents in the workplace. By equipping participants with the necessary knowledge and skills, the course aims to minimise the likelihood of accidents, injuries, and other undesirable outcomes.

One way in which the IOSH Managing Safely course achieves this is through promoting a proactive approach to health and safety. Participants learn about risk assessment techniques, hazard identification, safe working practises, and risk control measures. By becoming proactive in managing potential risks, organisations can prevent incidents from occurring in the first place, not only protecting employees from harm but also safeguarding the company’s reputation and financial well-being.

IOSH Managing Safely emphasises creating a postivie safety culture within organisations. Participants are taught the importance of effective communication, leadership, and employee engagement when it comes to health and safety. By fostering a positive safety culture, organisations can encourage employees to actively contribute to maintaining a safe and healthy working environment, leading to increased employee morale, productivity, and overall business success.

By focusing on reducing consequences related to safety incidents, this IOSH Managing Safely promotes a proactive approach to health and safety, through the development of a postivie safety culture and the identification and assessment of potential risks and hazards. This means candidates are better equipped to prevent accidents and protect both employees and businesses. Investing in this course can have long-lasting positive impacts on your workplace safety and overall organisational success.

Book your space on our next course online – https://raeburntraining.co.uk/courses/iosh/iosh-managing-safely/

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