What are the 5 Risk Control Measures?

What is risk control, what are risk control measures, what do they mean, and how to apply them?

project managers performing project risk assessment|project managers assessing project risks|how to assess project risks|elements of project risk management|project risk assessment template|Project Risk Assessment Template

What are Risk Control Measures?

Risk control measures are strategies implemented to mitigate or manage the potential risks and hazards that may arise in various activities, processes, or environments. After identifying and assigning a risk rating to a hazard, effective risk controls should be implemented to protect workers. Working through a hierarchy of controls can be an effective method of choosing the right control measure to reduce the risk.

5 Risk Control Measures

Below is the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health’s Hierarchy of Controls—composed of elimination, substitution, engineering controls, administrative controls, and PPE—that can help guide you in the process of formulating your organization’s risk control measures.


Elimination is the most effective hierarchy of risk control. If it is possible to physically remove a hazard, it must be done.


Substitution is the second most effective control. It proposes to replace the hazard with a safer alternative, e.g. automating a manual process identified as dangerous, buying a newer equipment model with better safety ratings, etc.

Engineering controls

Engineering controls refer to physically isolating people from the hazard if at all possible.

Administrative controls

Administrative controls refer to changing the way people work. This may include procedural updates, additional training, or increasing the visibility of precautionary signs and warning labels.


Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is the last line of defense if workers cannot be completely removed from a hazardous environment.

niosh hierarchy of controls

OSHA recommends the following guidelines to accomplish hazard control

Improve your GRC management

Simplify risk management and compliance with our centralized platform, designed to integrate and automate processes for optimal governance.

Explore now

  • Eliminate or control all serious hazards immediately.
  • Use interim controls while you develop and implement longer-term solutions.
  • Select controls according to a hierarchy that emphasizes engineering solutions (including elimination or substitution) first, followed by safe work practices, administrative controls, and finally personal protective equipment.
  • Avoid selecting controls that may directly or indirectly introduce new hazards.
  • Review and discuss control options with workers to ensure that controls are feasible and effective.
  • Use a combination of control options when no single method fully protects workers.
SafetyCulture Content Team
Article by

SafetyCulture Content Team

SafetyCulture Content Team
The SafetyCulture content team is dedicated to providing high-quality, easy-to-understand information to help readers understand complex topics and improve workplace safety and quality. Our team of writers have extensive experience at producing articles for different fields such as safety, quality, health, and compliance.