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Conduct a risk assessment if you're renovating your office!

by , 26 February 2013
Having contractors renovate your office can lead to many injuries. If ladders are left lying around they can be tripped over, while paint and oil spills are an easy way for employees to slip and hurt themselves. Construction vehicles are a life-threatening hazard too, as the news of a contractor who drive over a boy on his bike reveals. Luckily, you can take steps to minimise the risk of injuring your employees if there's construction or renovation planned in your office by conducting a risk assessment.

A British contractor has been guilty of violating health and safety regulations in the UK.
The Cape Breton Post reports that the contractor in a construction vehicle ran over a boy on his bike near an inn that was undergoing renovations.
The contractor has admitted that he didn't use any hazard assessment forms, policies or checklists.
In South Africa, this would out you in contravention of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
Most incidents in the workplace happen because of insufficient management controls! 
One way of ensuring your company identifies hazards and assesses risks is to do a complete and proper risk assessment of your workplace, says the Health and Safety Bulletin.
By identifying the risks, you'll be able to take preventative and precautionary measures to minimise or prevent any harm to your employees. 
Conducting a risk assessment will also put you in the all-clear with your Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) obligations.
If your business has lots of contractors on site at the moment as you're renovating your office, the Health and Safety Bulletin - 5 Good reasons to do risk assessments suggests you perform a special type of hazard risk assessment.
Conduct a specialised risk assessment if you're renovating your office!
In the field of hazard identification and risk assessment, there're several methods available for determining risk in your office. 
These models each have a specific application and are used to achieve specific objectives.
A specialised risk assessment will help you identify the specific risks involved with having contractors or renovators on your premises, such as the risk of employees being injured around construction vehicles.
By creating awareness of these hazards and risks, you'll be able to identify who may be at risk and minimise the risk of injury, such as by cordoning off the section of your office that's being worked on, says the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety.
Conduct a risk assessment each time there's a change in your workplace to ensure you comply with the Occupational Health and Safety Act – you won't be sorry!

Turn to chapter R01 of your Health and Safety Advisor and read all about the different risk assessment models you can use for your business.  

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