In short, there is no legal requirement to review a risk assessment after a certain period of time. However, the HSE states you should review a risk assessment when:
it is no longer valid
there has been a significant change
It is inevitable that your workplace will change over time. A risk assessment is there to identify any potential risks and implement control measures to prevent accidents. Therefore any changes to your workplace or processes will require a risk assessment review.
Examples of changes include:
- new equipment
- change a process or procedure
- use of new substances or chemicals
- new members of staff
- change in employee circumstances (i.e. pregnancy or health issue)
Accident or ill health
In the event of a workplace accident or a case of reported ill health related to the workplace it is vital to review your risk assessments. Even if an accident is avoided but there is a near miss you should still review them.
Health and safety legislation continually evolves and is amended to reflect changes and advances in technology, research and workplace practices. Not all changes will affect your risk assessments depending on which sectors you operate in and your type of business. If you are unable to keep up-to-date will all legislative changes it is advisable to consult a health and safety provider.
We recommend, as best practice, to always review your risk assessments annually. Systematising this process either internally or through your safety consultant will ensure they are up-to-date and the review has been recorded.
Safety management services
If you have 5 or more employees you must have access to professional health and safety advice. At Atlas, we can provide this on either an annual or retained basis. Our specialist health and safety consultants have many years of experience in a number of industries. Get in touch to arrange a free, no obligation health and safety consultation.