According to Safe Work Australia (2012) “The most efficient way of controlling risks is to eliminate a hazard, so far as is reasonably practicable. If not reasonably practicable the next step is to minimise the risks so far as is reasonably practicable…”
The Hierarchy of Control (HOC) is a system which outlines out the best way to deal with a hazard and control the risk. There are 6 stages in the HOC. When you see a hazard, you should try and use step 1. If step 1 is not possible, you should then use step 2 and so forth.
Get rid of it! This is the most effective method to control the hazards and involves removing the hazard completely. Examples include:
Replacing the hazard with a less dangerous alternative. Examples include:
Prevent others from getting close to the hazard. Examples include:
Also known as redesigning or modifying. This involves changing a process or tool in order to make it safer. Examples include:
Using signs, rules and training in an effort to make the environment safer. Examples include:
PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
It may not be the coolest look in the world but wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and clothing (safety gear) is essential. PPE includes:
Hint: You must use PPE if it is provided to you and the task requires it. It is your employer’s responsibility to provide you with adequate PPE.
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