How Do I Know If A Substance Needs A Risk Assessment?
Not every substance in a workplace needs a risk assessment, but which substances do require one can be highly dependant on the business, the materials they work with, and how these materials are processed. For example, wood doesn’t need a risk assessment on its own, but if it is processed in a way that produces sawdust, it becomes hazardous and therefore requires a risk assessment. A company that only sells on wood without producing any sawdust would not need a risk assessment, but a business such as a carpenter or joiner where sawdust is produced would need a risk assessment.
The easiest place to begin is by looking at the label. Most inherently hazardous substances will have a warning label attached, notifying the user that it poses a potential threat to their health. As a general rule, all substances with a warning label require a risk assessment.
The danger comes with less obvious health risks, such as the production of particles or fumes through the processing of materials. The best way to combat these risks is to have a Health & Safety professional assess your business and complete a CoSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health) assessment.
For more information on CoSHH risk assessments, read our blog ‘Is A CoSHH Assessment Just For Nasty Chemicals?’.
If you are unsure of which substances may be hazardous in your business, call Steve to arrange a Free Health & Safety Review on 0844 8797286.
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