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    ‘Myth Busters’ Challenge Panel provides risk assessment clarification

    The HSE Challenge Panel provides a mechanism for anyone to challenge advice on health and safety which is disproportionate or inaccurate.

    The panel offer its opinion on whether the advice was correct and proportionate in terms of its interpretation of the requirements of health and safety legislation. The Panel consider the overall facts of the case and the findings are made publicly available.

    The Challenge Panel Chair is Judith Hackitt, Chair of HSE and HSE Board member Robin Dahlberg is Vice-Chair. They are supported by a pool of independent panel members who have a wide range of experience and backgrounds in managing risk on a day-to-day basis.

    Does a rsk asessment need to be completed for every task?

    The panel has responded to an enquirer who reports being told that he needs to carry out a risk assessment for every single task that anyone performs within the company.

    The response from the panel is:

    “The advice the enquirer has been given does not appear to have been very clear and has created some confusion.

    HSE’s advice is very clearly that you do not need to perform a formal risk assessment for every task. Employers need to focus on real risks and how they will control them – the significant risks identified can all be recorded in one overall risk assessment which should also include a note of the action you intend to take.

    Acting to control the real risks should be the priority, not drafting endless paperwork covering every task staff undertake.

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