Qualitative Risk Assessment

Qualitative Risk Assessment methods include:

  • What if/Safety Checklist: A structured review to identify process hazards for a series of "what if" scenarios. A safety checklist is used to ensure that all likely hazards are included in the review.
  • Hazard Operability Analysis (HAZOP): A systematic group approach to identify and assess process hazards for specific processes in the system.

Regardless of the method used, the qualitative risk assessment process should include:

  • Input from SMEs, workers and management
  • Suggested controls (engineering and/or administrative) for each hazard identified.

A number of reference books are available which outline the What If/Checklist and HAZOP methods along with example systems. Other methods may be used as described in Ranking Risks depending on the equipment/process being reviewed and the expertise available. The key attributes of each of these methods is that they quantify risk based on likelihood of a problem and the level of consequence if it occurs.