3.2 Safety

Hazards and risks

Construction sites can be hazardous places but that doesn’t mean that they need to be dangerous. Why could that be? It’s because a hazard and a risk are two very different things:

A hazard is something that has the potential to cause harm and/or damage.

  • Open the interactive game and identify the site hazards.
  • What might happen? Think of why each situation is a hazard, and how an accident might occur.
  • List as many other hazards as you can think of.

The Wates Group controls hazards to reduce the risks on its sites. People, possibly due to a lack of training or experience, can increase risk to themselves and to others.

  • Look at your list of hazards. Which ones could be controlled?
image: Demolition

There is a chance that each hazard can cause an accident. Each accident will also have an impact – what will happen if it occurs. The chance, combined with the impact if it happens, is the risk. Some hazards may be high risk (e.g. very likely that someone could die), while others are low risk.

The Wates Group uses risk assessments. These identify hazards and those who would be affected, estimate the risk from each one as high, medium or low, and then identify ways to reduce the risks to the lowest practical level.

  • Write down the risk posed by each of your hazards.
  • What steps could you take to reduce these risks as an employer and as a worker on site?




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Enterprise skills

  • Risk-management

The enterprise process:

  • Evaluating

Site safety

Race against the clock to identify all of the on-site hazards.