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5 Tips For Carrying Out A COSHH Risk Assessment

Added: 24 Oct 2013 15:08 - Health and Safety Training ,  Workplace Health and Safety

Most companies use hazardous substances, chemicals and carcinogens of some description. This might include anything from cleaning chemicals to solvents and thinners. The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) regulations have been formulated to help to protect the health of employees using these substances or those in the vicinity of where these substances are used or stored. Chemical exposure can result in burns, respiratory problems and very often death. It is essential that your organisation abides by the latest COSHH regulations at all times.

Carrying Out A COSHH Risk Assessment

You may already be aware of the risks affecting your trade and industry. A thorough COSHH risk assessment will ensure you are also aware of the specific risks affecting your business and your employees. Every organisation and company is unique and has unique requirements when it comes to COSHH and training in this area of expertise is an essential requirement.

1.  The Walk Around

Taking a walk around your workplace is the first stage in carrying out a COSHH risk assessment. Think about the areas where hazardous substances may be used or where exposure to these substances may be more likely. Processes that involve the emission of fumes, dust, gas, or mists or where liquids, pastes or dusts may come into contact with the skin should be top of your list. Speak to managers, members of staff and even your suppliers to get a good idea of the processes and substances in use and their risk to health and safety.

2. Assessing The Risks

Think about the daily jobs and tasks required by your business and your industry. What control measures are you already using? Are these procedures written down and easily accessible to all members of staff involved in these jobs? How likely are your employees to suffer from harm using hazardous substances? Are the control measures in place sufficient to prevent these risks?

3.  What Risks Do The Substances You Are Using Pose To Health?

No matter what substances you are using in your line of work, you should be aware of the risks. Ask suppliers for safety data sheets and also keep up to date with trade news and information. Some health and safety risks arise through processes using chemicals and substances. In these cases there may not be a safety data sheet, but you should be aware of fumes being created as the result of welding or dust being formed as the result of quarrying, for example.

4.  Review Your Accident Book And Define Your Reporting Processes

Take a look at your accident book. Are there any examples of burns, light headedness or nausea arising from exposure to substances? Are employees able to report any accident easily and will that accident be looked into to identify health and safety issues?

5.  Take Responsibility – Our COSHH Training Courses Give You Support And Confidence

Don’t wait for an accident in the workplace to happen. A COSHH risk assessment is an essential health and safety requirement. You have a duty of care to your employees and by arranging the right training you can be sure you are reducing and negating the risk of exposure to hazardous substances across your workplace. Speak to us today to find out more about our COSHH training course and its many benefits.

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