Humans as Hazards – Have we fully assessed the risks of a changing world

09 Sep 2021
09:20 - 10:05

Humans as Hazards – Have we fully assessed the risks of a changing world

We are often confronted with circumstances where control measures have been circumvented. Those controls are often criticised as they have not protected against human error. It raises the question, have we actually identified the human as the hazard and appropriately assessed the risk? In this presentation we will explore: Humans as the hazard is not a new concept, while it is not always expressed in that way, assessment and management of the risk of a person with a mental illness causing harm to another is an important part of providing medical treatment. Humans are not often considered as the hazard outside of that medical context other than for some specific professions, security providers, police services, ambulance services and the like.

How has your business assessed the risk humans pose? We are cognisant that with the new ways of working means more people regularly working remotely from home, though what is being done to identify the hazard and assess the risk. In an extreme example, the NSW Court of Appeal found that compensation was payable to two dependent children, who’s mother was killed by her de facto partner while working from home. Regulators have expressed increasing interest in this area and have dedicated groups looking at ‘psychosocial’ risks posed to workers. What have they been looking for when making those enquiries at the workplace?