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Learn QHSE Learn Health & Safety > What is the difference between hazards and risks?

What Is The Difference Between Hazards and Risks?

Hazards and risks. These two terms can sometimes be used interchangeably, but actually have slightly different meanings.

A hazard is the possibility of something causing harm

A risk is the probability and likelihood of harm occurring.

For example, it’s possible that a bottle of bleach could be used incorrectly, causing harm. But you need to ask, how probable is it that this is going to happen? Until an action has actually occurred, it is only a hazard, not a risk.

Another example could be working at heights. Standing on top of a tall building is a hazard. The risk is how probable (say high, medium, or low) will you slip or step off the building and cause harm to yourself.

Should I care about the difference between hazards and risks?

You should care because managing your hazards and risks all help to prevent incidents and injuries. That is what your health and safety systems are all about.

ISO 45001 Occupational Health and Safety Management

ISO 45001 is the internationally accepted standard for occupational health and safety management.

ISO 45001 lays out a framework to improve safety, minimise workplace risks and enhance health and well-being at work, enabling an organisation to improve its Occupational Health and Safety performance. It provides the minimum standard of practice to protect employees around the world.

Become compliant and certified to ISO 45001 with QSM Group. Contact us today.

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