With regard to risk assessment at work, the Labour Protection Act (ArbeitnehmerInnenschutzgesetz, ASchG) gives a lot of leeway; however, the following procedure is recommended:
- The company premises, the construction site or activities should be subdivided into local or activity-based units, which will serve as a basis for drawing up the safety and health protection documents (see Documentation).
- Identify the hazards and risks existing in the defined units or evaluation areas with the aid of checklists.
- The assessment of the hazards and risks identified as specified in item 2 above should be made with regard to the probability of their occurrence, duration of exposure, possible severity of damage, but also the technical feasibility of countermeasures and, under certain circumstances, a cost/benefit calculation of precautionary measures. The basic rule applies: the higher the risk, the higher the reasonable input for avoiding or minimizing the risk. Risk assessment does not deal with clear violations of laws.
- If risk assessment has demonstrated that action is needed, measures should be implemented to minimize these risks with deadlines being set in accordance with the urgency of risk elimination.
- The last step consists of drawing up the documents (described in item one above) which testify to the visible and traceable findings of the assessment.