To us Risk Assessment is the key to everything. A well written Risk Assessment that is followed through will have identified all of the risks and have come up with a strategy that will ensure worker safety throughout the task to be undertaken.
Risk Assessment Abbreviation
Abbreviations for Risk Assessments are RA and RAMS although you will more often see it listed as RAMS. In actual fact RAMS is the combination of the Risk Assessment and the Method Statement which describes how the task will be conducted after studying the findings detailed in the RA.
Risk Assessment Forms
These can vary greatly from one Company to another and there are various tables and graphs that can be used to determine the overall hazards and likely occurrence. As with most things, the devil is in the detail rather than how fancy the graph looks. So long as you list what is actually there, rather than an assumption the findings should always come out the same no matter who has written them. But, be careful not to allow professional bias to lead you to your conclusions and ensure that you are always up to date on the latest legislation and products that are available. This is where the professional bias can lead to an out of date conclusion, just because you have used certain equipment or methods in the past does not mean that this train of thought has not changed or a product now available that offers even better safety.
Generic Risk Assessments
These are assessments that are already written for a task that in detail looks similar to the task that is required to be done. Be very careful with these! They are a great starting point but every job should have a Specific Risk Assessment done for it. This may mean that only a few details need to be altered from the generic one but that is what saves lives.
Specific Risk Assessment
This is the best every time. The Risk Assessment is written from start to finish for the specific task you are about to undertake. This will allow for any eventuality and the workforce will not only be safe but usually complete the task quicker because all of the pitfalls and criteria are known and fully understood.
Dynamic Risk Assessment
This is where the Risk assessment is done at the time of the task to be undertaken. It usually applies to our rescue services where they have responded to an emergency call. It is always worth remembering that whilst the emergency services will always do their best to help, the overriding criteria are to ensure safety to the team first. This will, and rightfully should, always take priority over the rescue. Dynamic Risk Assessments are not usually as fast as some think they should be but that is because they are trying to ensure that what has already gone wrong does not happen to their team.
Risk Assessment Implementation
The best Risk Assessment in the world is worthless unless the people conducting the task have read and understood it! This is the most common problem we see and generally results in accidents.