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Reviewing Your Risk Controls

This week I've been talking about the adequacy of risk controls, or more to the point, failures in implementing them properly or reviewing things once implemented (How's that for a mouthful?).

As investigators, we regularly see the results of failure to implement controls properly. Unfortunately, too many of these incidents result in fatalities or serious injuries.

Some quick tips when undertaking risk assessments-

1) Identify the hazards in the task. Ensure multiple people are involved in this process

2) Assess the risk of those hazards so we have a benchmark score

3) Implement controls while ensuring those implemented controls don't create additional or other unseen hazards and byproducts

4) Re-assess the hazards with the controls. Have we reduced the risk levels?

5) When implementing the controls, ensure what we imagined on paper, is what is actually done in the work front. If not, revisit the process

6) Stay alert for changes in the process. Has the scope of work changed for example? If so, undertake a review again

Likewise, you can do the same with your investigation actions- how do you evaluate the effectiveness of recommendations? Have your reports and recommendations addressed all absent/failed defences and organisational factors identified during the ICAM process?

Do you engage a third party (such as Safety Wise!) to undertake a review of your completed reports and recommendations?

Looking for some resources to use as training and toolbox talks? There are two case study examples of investigations we did- one was a near miss event (Roadworks) and the other could've resulted in more serious or even fatal injuries (Maintenance work). These are downloadable videos and sample reports at

Interested in Knowing More?

Further information on Safety Wise’s Incident Cause Analysis (ICAM) Training is available from our website:

Additional ICAM Related Services

Safety Wise also offers the following additional services for sites that adopt the ICAM investigation analysis method:

  • Quality review of incident investigations using ICAM

  • Participation in investigations as an external/independent party

  • Investigation coaching


ABOUT THE AUTHOR- Luke Dam (Chief Executive Officer)

Luke has worked in various industries over the years including pharmaceutical, retail, manufacturing, and transport including iconic brands like WesFarmers, Goodyear, CSL Limited, and Incitec Pivot Limited.

His work in OHS and learning and development has seen him deliver services to clients, both internal and external as well as managing service delivery teams around the world.

Luke holds a Graduate Certificate of Management (Learning) as well as a Diploma of Occupational Health and Safety, a Diploma of Training and Assessment Systems, a Certificate IV Workplace Training and Assessment, a Certificate III in Mine Emergency Response & Rescue and a Certificate II in Public Safety (SES Rescue).

Luke is extensively involved in a project to establish an association dedicated to confined space safety and to drive change in legislation to promote best-practice in this high-risk area. Luke is passionate about online OHS and incident investigation communities, moderating a number of large LinkedIn groups boasting over 11,000 members globally.


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