Pro-active monitoring is about checking to ensure that standards are met and that the workplace is, in fact, safe and
free of health risks before any unwanted event takes place. Proactive methods include:
- Audits involving comprehensive and independently executed examinations of all aspects of an organisation’s health and safety performance against stated objectives;
- Inspections carried out on a regular basis which identifies existing conditions and compares them with agreed performance objectives;
- Safety surveys focusing on a particular activity such as manual handling, training programmes and workers’ attitudes towards safety;
- Sampling where specific areas of occupational health and safety are targeted;
- Tours involving unscheduled workplace inspections to check on issues such as wearing of personal protective equipment and housekeeping;
- Benchmarking where an organisation’s performance in certain areas is compared with that of other organisations with similar processes and risks, and
- Health or medical surveillance using techniques such as audiometry and blood or urine analysis.
Reactive monitoring is about measuring safety performance by reference to accidents, incidents and ill-health
that have already occurred. Reactive monitoring methods which might be used include:
- Accident and ill-health statistics and reports;
- Incidents of reported near-misses and dangerous occurrences;
- Property damage;
- Actions were taken by the enforcement authorities;
- The number of civil claims;
- An analysis of absences and lost time;
- Complaints by workers and the costs involved in all the above.
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