London - An online risk assessment service for small businesses was launched 13 Sept at the XIX World Congress on Safety and Health at Work, in Istanbul, Turkey.
This Online interactive Risk Assessment (OiRA) project is the first initiative at EU level to aid workplace risk assessment.
It was developed by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), and the agency claims it "offers innovative tools," to help Europe's 20 million micro and small enterprises improve safety and health for workers by assessing risks through an easy-to-use and cost-free web application.
"Experience shows that proper risk assessment is the key to healthy workplaces," explains Dr Jukka Takala, director of EU-OSHA. "Yet carrying out risk assessments can be quite challenging, particularly for small enterprises as they lack adequate resources or the know-how to do so effectively."
Takala says the reasons companies give for not carrying out checks are; lack of expertise (41 percent) and the belief that risk assessments are too expensive or that they are overly time consuming (38 percent).
"In OiRA, EU-OSHA is proud to offer a free online tool to overcome these challenges. OiRA contributes to eliminating or reducing the 168 000 work-related deaths, 7 million accidents and 20 million cases of work-related disease annually in the EU 27," Takala added, in an EU-OSHA announcement.