Hazard:                    Source of potential harm, injury or loss.

Risk:                         combination of the likelihood of a specific unwanted event and the potential consequences if it should occur.

Risk Assessment: Is a process that involves measurement of risk to determine priorities and to enable identification of appropriate level of risk treatment (used also to describe the overall process of risk management).

Risk Control:            Implementation of strategies to prevent or control hazards.

Risk Rating:              The category or level or risk assigned following risk assessment (eg. High, Medium, Low etc.)

Risk Management: Overall description of the steps taken to manage risk, by identifying hazards and implementing controls in the workplace

Risk Assessment Process

Risk assessment is to be performed on a regular basis. The goal for each risk assessment session is to identify hazards, determine risk ratings and controls, and to review the implementation of risk controls from previous risk assessment sessions.

 The following workflow diagram illustrates the areas involved in performing a risk assessment session.

 The risk of any hazard is dependent upon the chance that it will occur (likelihood) and the impact of an occurrence (consequence): -

                              Risk Score = Likelihood x Consequence

Consequence is the size of the loss or damage. In terms of health and safety, it is the degree of harm that could be caused to people exposed to the hazard, the potential severity of injuries or ill health and / or the number of people who could be potentially affected. It should be remembered that consequence of a hazard need not only be in terms of safety criteria but could also be in terms of a money loss, incurred costs, loss of production, environmental impacts as well as public outrage.

Likelihood is the chance that the hazard might occur.

In some cases personnel are only exposed to the hazard for part of the time. A more detailed analysis can be carried out of the Risk Ranking by taking this into consideration. Replacing Likelihood by Exposure (% time personnel are present) and Probability (chance that they will be harmed).

Risk score = Probability x Exposure x Consequence

 The values used for Likelihood, Consequence, Exposure or Probability need to be agreed by the risk assessment team.

Risk ranking can be determined by qualitative and quantitative means. It should however be remembered that none of these methods are best. The best choice of method will depend on the circumstances and preferences at the mine at the time the exercise is done. However regardless of the method establishing Risk Ranking will set priorities for Hazard control. The most important purpose in Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Ranking is to draw up and implement plans to control these hazards. These plans are then included in the Safety Management Plan.

Treatment Controls and Action Plans

Examine the high priority risks. Consider the potential to reduce or eliminate the risk by using the hierarchy of controls. This assists establishing methods to reduce the risk. From experience, the effectiveness of each method is given as a percentage after each of the control descriptions.

Elimination: Remove step to eliminate the hazard completely ( 100% ) Substitution: Replace with less hazardous material, substance or process (75%) Separation: Isolate hazard from person by guarding, space or time separation (50%) Administration: Adjusting the time or conditions of risk exposures (30%)

Training: Improving skills making tasks less hazardous to persons involved (20%)

Personal protective equipment: Used as the last resort, appropriately designed and properly fitted equipment where other controls are not practicable (5%).

Control measures can reduce either the Likelihood or Consequence of the event or both. Depending on the level of reduction of the hazard there could still be a residual risk that needs to be monitored so that a secondary prevention process can be initiated when trigger points are reached.


01-12-2021    0