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Hazard Identification and Assessment


Hazard identification and Assessment is the principal means by which process errors can be reduced or eliminated. The planning process for for hazard identification and assessment will ensure that personnel injuries, release to the environment, property damage and lost productivity will be reduced to a minimal level.

The University has established requirements for identifying and controlling hazards to ensure the safety of personnel are enhanced and to meet various requirements of The Occupational Health and Safety Administration. The Employer (Supervisor) is expected to

  • Provide a written hazard assessment, including a risk assessment and identification of methods used to control or eliminate the hazards.
  • Involve workers in assessing the hazards and communicate the results to all involved workers.
  • Make the hazard assessments available to workers who may be exposed to the hazards.
  • Use the accepted hierarchy of controls in selecting control methods (first elimination of the hazard if possible, followed by engineering controls, then administrative controls and, as a last resort, personal protective equipment).


The Dean, Director or Department Head has ultimate accountability for ensuring that the hazard assessment and control process is completed in their area of responsibility. This is normally delegated to supervisors who are more directly involved in supervising day to day operations and are often in the best position to implement the process.

Staff participation in this process is highly recommended, as those performing the tasks are usually aware of potential hazards and make effective suggestions for controlling the hazards. There is a standardized process including a ranking system and consistent terminology that has been developed for the University However other alternate means of identifying and assessing hazards are acceptable provided a complete assessment has been accomplished.

Those selected to complete the hazard assessment and control process should complete training provided by the Environment, Health & Safety Department. This training is available in both web-based and classroom formats.

The hazard assessment process should be reviewed annually and revised when any changes are made to procedures or materials.

Supervisor Responsibility

The supervisor's responsibilities related to this process are to:

  • Implement the hazard assessment and control process and perform/participate in hazard assessments as required.
  • Administer the system for maintaining hazard assessment and control records.
  • Ensure that hazard assessments and control options are communicated to all affected workers, researchers and students.
  • Approve and implement recommendations from the hazard assessments/control forms.
  • Ensure workers using hazard control measures are properly trained.
  • Identify employees requiring medical monitoring under the OH&S Code.
  • Review and update hazard assessment and control form at least annually. These forms should also be reviewed post-accident or if new equipment or a process is introduced to the work area.

Resources available for Supervisors

The following resources are available to assist supervisors in carrying out their responsibilities:

  • Classroom training sessions provided by EH&S.
  • Web-based training and instruction
  • Hazard Assessment & Control - Process provides a guide and outlines the process
  • Hazard Assessment and Control forms with completed samples.
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Workbook provides guidance on completing a hazard assessment.
  • Professional occupational health & safety consultation, as required.
  • Review of completed hazard assessments.
  • Occupational hygiene evaluation and monitoring of hazards.

Finally, the EH&S group has developed templates to guide supervisors in identifying hazards and assigning appropriate controls. These are to be used as a starting point.

Hazard Assessment & Control Templates

  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Example of completed form
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Office/Administration
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Faculty/Teaching
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Research/Wet Lab
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Trades/Technical/Engineering
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Caretaking
  • Hazard Assessment & Control Template - Blank
Last modified: March 26, 2008
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