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Workplace Risk Assessments and Evaluations

Workplace Risk Assessments and Evaluations

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WHAT IS A RISK ASSESSMENT? WHY IS IT SO VALUABLE?

A workplace risk assessment helps identify hazards and risk factors that could potentially harm the health and safety of employees and even the community in danger. The risk assessment then analyzes and evaluates the types and levels of risk associated with those hazards. The third component is to come up with ways to reduce or (ideally) completely eliminate the hazard.

In short, the workplace risk assessment is a comprehensive overview of what kinds of hazards might be lurking in your place of employment and a prescription for how to mitigate or eliminate them.

This process is not only a valuable step towards achieving a safe workplace, but it is also a required element of doing due diligence in maintaining standards under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act and reducing or eliminating liability on the part of the employer. By undertaking a workplace risk assessment & evaluation, you are laying the foundation to execute safety precautions and improve the health and safety protocols in your company, organization or work site.

A construction worker wearing a safety harness
A worker verifies the pressure on a fire extinguisher

WHEN SHOULD YOU PERFORM A RISK ASSESSMENT? WHERE DO YOU START?

A workplace risk assessment should be undertaken for the following:

  • Prior to launching new processes or programs
  • Before changing existing processes
  • When changes occur with regard to equipment, machinery, tools, etc.
  • When new hazards are observed or introduced, or when new information becomes available regarding the above

You can start the process on your own, a bit like starting from scratch or reinventing the wheel. Or you can call on the experts to perform a professional and thorough workplace risk assessment and evaluation.

At Advanced Consulting & Training, we’ve accumulated decades of experience in workplace risk assessments working with health and safety committees of many different sizes and levels of experience. We have the depth and breadth of knowledge it takes to identify risks and hazards as well as prescribe what you can do to mitigate them and create a safe & healthy workplace. By hiring us, you are getting peace of mind, knowing that important steps in your workplace safety programs are in good hands, and your employees will be taught how to maintain program standards long after we are done.

ADVANCED CONSULTING AND TRAINING

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  • Step 1: Identify the hazards
  • Step 2: Decide who could potentially be harmed - and how
  • Step 3: Evaluate the risks and decide on control measures
  • Step 4: Record your findings
  • Step 5: Review your assessment and update as needed
Typically, there are 6 types of workplace hazards:
  • Biological
  • Chemical
  • Physical
  • Safety
  • Ergonomic
  • Psychosocial
There are a few things you will need to determine before beginning a risk assessment:
  • The scope of the assessment. Specifically, it is what you are assessing like the lifetime of a product, physical work space, the type of work done in that space, and types of known hazards.
  • The resources needed such as personnel and sources of information.
  • The type of risk analysis measures to use. This means the scale or parameters needed in order to provide the most relevant information.
  • The key stakeholders such as managers, supervisors, workers and their representatives and suppliers.
  • The relevant laws, regulations, codes, standards, as well as organizational policies and procedures.
For those inexperienced with conducting risk assessments, this preparation can be a daunting task. Advanced Consulting & Training’s team of experts can help with every step of planning and conducting a risk assessment. That way you can be sure that you will not only complete your risk assessment, but it will be done with the highest degree of success.
Yes, even offices need to conduct risk assessments under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act. Office employees may not be subject to the same hazards as other workers such as warehouse, or construction workers, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t subject to any hazards at all. Usually, workplace injuries in an office occur slowly over time. Common hazards in an office can include:
  • Poor ventilation
  • Workstations with no ergonomic equipment
  • Unsafe building materials such as asbestos
  • Unsafe or overuse of outlets and power supplies.
  • Overly cluttered or unclean spaces
  • Unfinished walls, floors, or ceilings with exposed electrical wiring
  • Infrequently cleaned fridges filled with moldy food
These aren’t the only hazards an office can have, but it gives you a good idea of risks that could lead to office workers making a WSIB claim. Advanced Consulting & Training can help assess your office and create a plan to mitigate risks.
If an injury occurs in the workplace, both the WSIB claim and the loss of productivity of that worker will cost the business money. An average WSIB claim is $11,771. With the loss of productivity and temporary replacement of that staff member, costs can reach as high as $59,000.

Assuming your business runs on a profit margin of 5%, you would need to make $1.2 million in sales to cover the cost of a single injury. This is one of the better case scenarios.

If an individually owned business is found to not have done their due diligence to mitigate or eliminate hazards, they can be prosecuted under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. If found guilty by the court, that person faces up to a $100,000 fine and/or up to 12 months imprisonment.

A corporation that is found guilty in this manner is subject to a fine of up to $1.5 million.

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Advanced Consulting & Training Ltd.

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    Advanced Consulting and Training Ltd.
    46 Antares Drive, Unit 3, Ottawa, Ont. K2E 7Z1

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    Contact Info

    Telephone: (613) 225-5169
    Telephone: 1-888-899-7772
    Fax: (613) 225-6409