Hazard identification & risk assessment (HIRA)

Hazard identification & risk assessment (HIRA)

Hazard identification & risk assessment is a process that involves identifying hazards and

risks to people, property, and the environment.

Red Hard Hat on the Pave

Hazard

Definition of hazard states that, hazard is a property of a system/process that poses the possibility of an accident. As a result, all system components must be thoroughly reviewed to determine their potential for beginning or propagating an unplanned event sequence of events known as an accident.

Hazard Identification

When you examine a hazard, you will be able to determine what it is. This can be done by looking at the name of the hazard and what it causes. For example, if you are observing a fire hazard, you know that it is very dangerous because it can cause a fire. You can also consider other things about the hazard, like how dangerous it is or how often people get hurt by it. If you are going to create something dangerous, you need to make sure it contains all of these so that people don’t get hurt when they use your product.

The Process involved to identify hazards

 

The first step of the process is to identify hazards. This can be done using a checklist and asking questions like “How many people are at risk?” and “What are the potential consequences of each hazard?” Once you have identified the hazards, you need to assess their severity. You must consider the likelihood of these hazards occurring and their severity in terms of injury or death if they occur.

Once you have completed the hazard identification, you should also perform a risk analysis for each hazard. This will help identify which threats pose the greatest threat and what can be done to reduce that threat to an acceptable level. A risk is an undesirable consequence of an event or sequence of events. Risk arises when several risk factors occur at the same time, causing an accident which manifests as an event such as fire, explosion. 

Risk Assessment (RA) is a method that has proven its value as a comprehensive tool for improving safety standards in all hazardous industries. With advances in integrated and inherent safety systems, accident rates have dropped, but remain unacceptable for new technology, new plants, and chemical handling facilities.

Hazardous materials are defined as substances or physical agents that pose an immediate threat to human health or safety when they enter the work environment. Examples of hazardous materials include chemicals, biological agents, radioactive materials, explosives, and corrosives.

RA is a structured security assessment tool designed for high-risk industries such as chemicals, petrochemicals, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, seaports, etc., in addition to security system tools other security systems such as HAZOP, security audits and regular incident analysis to determine the likelihood of an incident (near defect, unsafe condition) and to evaluate the necessary control measures   

Objectives of HIRA study:

  1. Carryout a systematic, critical appraisal of all potential hazards involving personnel, plant, services and operation methods.
  2. Identify the existing safeguards available to control the risks due to the hazards.
  3. Suggest additional control measures to reduce the risk to acceptable level.
  4. Prepare a Risk register that will help in continuously monitoring these risks
  5. Detect any changes and ensure the controls are effective
Hazard Identification & Risk Assessment work flow infinity cycle _ Photo by author.
Hazard Identification & Risk Assessment work flow infinity cycle _ Photo by author.

Hazards can cause injuries and fatalities if they are not appropriately managed.

 

The following are some examples of hazards:
 

    • Injury from falls due to slipping on ice or debris
    • Falls from ladders due to slippery surfaces
    • Burns from hot liquids due to splashing or spilling over a surface
    • Injuries caused by an object falling off an object
    • Blunt force trauma injuries sustained in a collision with another object

Risk Assessment

 

After identifying the hazard, you need to think about the possibility that someone could be harmed if exposed to the hazard. You also need to think about the type of harm that can be caused by this hazard and how serious it would be if someone were to face a high risk.

The general hierarchy of risk reducing measures
The general hierarchy of risk reducing measures _Photo by author

When you examine a hazard, you will be able to determine what it is. This can be done by looking at the name of the hazard and what it causes. For example, if you are observing a fire hazard, you know that it is very dangerous because it can cause a fire. You can also consider other things about the hazard, like how dangerous it is or how often people get hurt by it. If you are going to create something dangerous, you need to make sure it contains all of these so that people don’t get hurt when they use your product. Risk assessment

After identifying the hazard, you need to think about the possibility that someone could be harmed if exposed to the hazard. You also need to think about the type of harm that can be caused by this hazard and how serious it would be if someone were to face a high risk (like being in an enclosed space without oxygen).

Matrix Heat-map report to determine the levels of risk involved
Matrix Heat-map report to determine the levels of risk involved_Photo by author
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