Why We Should Follow Hazard Control Hierarchy

hazard-control-hierarchyHazard recognitionhazard control-and hazard assessment cycle is an ongoing process and should be improved continuously. Identified hazards are useless unless followed up and appropriate controls are provided. Hazard control ideally could eliminate hazards from the sources.

However, not all hazard controls have same capability in eliminating, reducing or controlling hazards. Some hazard controls are powerful than others. What we have to do is following hazard control hierarchy, which is mentioned below, ensuring that we have tried the most effective method to eliminate hazards.

1. Hazard elimination
2. Hazard reduction
3. Provide engineering controls
4. Using administrative controls
5. Wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Don’t try to jump to the lower hazard control in the above hierarchy when we are attempting to choose hazard control. We have to start from number 1, 2 and up to 5. Hazard control number 2 to 5 could not eliminate the hazards and it means the hazards still exist.

If hazard elimination, reduction and engineering control are not feasible, implementing administrative control, such as providing SOP, and appropriate personal protective equipment would be the choices. Next, we should evaluate their effectiveness on controlling hazards.

In the next post, we will learn in more detail about the 5 hazard control methods above.

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