Hazard Assessment

At the core of every successful safety and health program is a systematic process for identifying and controlling (i.e., finding and fixing) workplace hazards.  In the past, most approaches have been reactive, but now, there are so many more tools to help negate the injuries associated with work place hazards.  We have improved our technology, processes etc., as well as the workplace being more conscious of safety.  Some hazards, such as housekeeping and tripping hazards, can and should be fixed as they are found. Fixing hazards on the spot emphasizes the importance of safety and health and takes advantage of a safety leadership opportunity. To learn more about fixing other hazards identified using the processes described here, see “Hazard Prevention and Control.”  Information about hazards may be available from outside sources, such as:

OSHA, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) websites, publications, and alerts.

To identify and assess hazards, employers and workers:

  • Gather and review information about the hazards present or likely to be present in the workplace.
  • Conduct initial and periodic workplace inspections of the workplace to identify new or recurring hazards.
  • Investigate injuries, illnesses, incidents, and close calls/near misses to determine the underlying hazards, their causes, and safety and health program shortcomings.
  • What are the hazards associated with emergency or nonroutine situations.