Health and Safety Risk Assessment

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Published November 3rd, 2020

What is a Health and Safety Risk Assessment?

A health and safety risk assessment is a process that identifies, analyzes, controls, and eliminates hazards that can cause injury or illness to the workforce and negatively impact the business. Employers are required by law to conduct health and safety risk assessments to ensure the safety of their employees and the public.

5 Steps to Effectively Implement Health and Safety Risk Assessment

According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), employers and self-employed persons are legally required to make an assessment of health and safety risks that may be present in their workplace. Risk assessments should be carried out before proceeding with the work task. Below is a step-by-step guide to performing a health and safety risk assessment:

  1. Identify the hazard
    Walk around the workplace and assess activities, processes, or substances that could be a potential cause for injury. Hazards can be classified into 4 different types, these are:

    • Physical (e.g., lifting, slips and trips, noise dust, machinery, etc.)
    • Mental (e.g., excess workload, long hours, bullying, etc.)
    • Chemical (e.g., asbestos, cleaning fluids, aerosols, etc.)
    • Biological (e.g., infectious diseases, tuberculosis, hepatitis, etc.)
  2. Determine who it affects and how
    Once hazards are identified, identify which persons in the organization are at risk. Review work routine, location, and situation of employees. Another thing to consider is the health and safety of the public. This refers to those who don’t work in the organization but are exposed to potential hazards due from business operations. For example, in construction sites, passersby are at risk of potential injury from debris, chemical substances, etc.
  3. Assess the risks and take corrective action
    Employers must now analyze risks to determine the corrective actions to take. Two key questions to ask when assessing the risks and formulating corrective actions are:

    • How bad would the most severe injury be if a person is exposed to the hazard?
    • How likely is the person to be injured if exposed to the hazard?
  4. Document risk assessment
    Risk assessments should be documented to serve as proof that it was carried out, and as a basis for later review of working practices. The report should include details of hazards identified and the corrective action taken.
  5. Review risk assessment and update
    Risk assessments should be reviewed regularly to check if control measures taken are effective or needs updating. It should be reviewed every time a business goes through changes that may increase the likelihood of new hazards to arise.

What are Health and Safety Risk Assessment Templates?

Health and Safety Risk Assessment forms are valuable tools used primarily to control risks in the workplace and to improve overall HSE management. These Health and Safety Risk Assessment templates can help you (1) identify health and safety hazards associated with job tasks, (2) determine the people at risk, (3) record and analyze significant data, and (4) set preventive measures to further reduce or eliminate risks.

We have collected 6 of the best digital templates that you can use for your health and safety risk assessments to help maintain and improve health and safety in your workplace. These templates can be downloaded for free into the iAuditor mobile health and safety software and enable you to perform paperless inspections on your hand-held device. Incorporate these HSE risk assessment tools with your company strategies and catch risks before things go wrong.


Jai Andales

SafetyCulture staff writer

Jai is a content writer for SafetyCulture based in Manila. She has been writing well-researched articles about health and safety topics since 2018. She is passionate about empowering businesses to utilize technology in building a culture of safety and quality.