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Dupes of hazard


The wording 'professional responsibilities to design out hazards' (NCE 27 May) is a gross over-simplification. Many hazards cannot be designed out.

There is a sequence of risk assessment to systematically determine the hazards, the probability of harm occurring and the anticipated consequence for each. This is followed by identification of controls to reduce the more serious risks or their effect.

The stages are to identify hazards and likelihoods in each area of activity, assess risk levels and eliminate where possible, introduce controls where not.

You quote Gerry Steinberg as saying 'that 60 % of accidents are caused by problems in design'. You also say 'statistics showing that 60% of fatalities on site can be traced to poor design'. These are not the same thing. There were 71 fatalities and 4780 major injuries, but how many accidents were there?

Who is the judge of the standard of design? What are these statistics based on?

Detailed information on these accidents is needed to back this up.

Richard Garry (M), r@garry. uk. net

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