Step 3: Identify Hazards and Risks and Report to Policyholder

The Southern Agency producers are trained to identify hazards that could cause injury and measure the likelihood or risk of the hazards to people, property, or operations.  Most often when people think of “risk,” they will think of “hazard” as well. While these are somewhat synonymous, the terms are not the same.

No employer wants their employees to get injured. Identifying hazards and unsafe acts and conditions may require an imagination and may seem somewhat subjective. In many ways it is just common sense. Ask: “What could happen if this occurred?” “What are the consequences if this part is removed from the machine?” etc…

A “hazard” is a situation or anything that could cause harm, such as the presence or use of an unguarded saw or a broken ladder.  A hazard could be posed to either persons, property or environment, or any combination of the three.  A hazard is a potential for harm.

“Risk” is defined as the combination and consequences of a particular event or circumstance. It is the chance, high or low, that someone or something could be harmed by hazards, together with an indication of how serious the harm could be.  A “hazardous circumstance” could be someone cutting off a finger with an unguarded saw, or falling off of a broken ladder, etc.

Some people get mixed up when discussing a Job Hazard Analysis with a Job Safety Analysis.  While these also may seem the same, these analyses are really like brother and sister.  The Job Safety Analysis is the precursor to the Job Hazard Analysis, and each technique identifies dangers that are present or could be present to workers and the public.

The true difference between the Job Hazard Analysis (JHA) and the Job Safety Analysis (JSA) is that the Job Hazard Analysis gauges the probability of a hazard injuring someone and identifying the severity of an injury. Once the JHA is complete, the organization has a plan of what can be done to reduce the likelihood of an injury by reviewing processes to eliminate the hazard or reduce the hazard to a tolerable or acceptable level.

No matter what a person calls it, in simplest terms, IT IS ALL ABOUT KEEPING WORKERS AND THE PUBLIC INJURY-FREE.  Having a plan and updating the employer’s Standard Operating Procedure as hazards are identified is the key!

There are many benefits of spending time with your Southern Agency producer reviewing hazards and risks, including:

  • Our insurance company underwriters will be reviewing your application closely and with this information as part of the application, your business will get noticed. They want to know that your organization has at least identified hazards and risks.  Our signature reports help them gauge their comfort level and this can seriously impact how competitive we can be. (Remember, business insurance is negotiable.)

  • We have seen over-and-over by using our techniques, our team has reduced claims and injury counts.  This obviously helps on future costs but most importantly, this process can reduce the likelihood of an injury to employees or the public.

  • This process can bring unexpected value to the morale or employees and reduce the likelihood of OSHA fines, especially if the business solves problems found during this process.

Additionally, your producer can arrange for a Loss Control representative to help your company put together a formal safety program.

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