Since absolute safety is generally not possible, the riskbased approach applied in many countries to prevent hazards. The risk management approach enables the identification of potential hazards and provides a system for prevention of them. An occupational health and safety management system promotes a safe and healthy working environment by providing a framework that allows organizations to consistently identify and control its health and safety risks, reduce the potential for accidents, aid legislative compliance and improve overall performance. The occupational health and safety management systems have the following common objectives:
- continuously improve the health and safety issues,
- enact prevention as a priority in the organization,
- support the entrepreneur responsibility,
- involvement of staff in decision-making,
- motivation of managers and employees,
- reduce the costs,
- synergies with other management systems,
- transparency in the organization and external.
The occupational health and safety management system OHSAS (Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series) was developed to provide organizations with the elements of an effective occupational health and safety management system that can be integrated with other management requirements and help organizations achieve occupational health and safety as well as economic objectives. The standard OHSAS 18001 guided also by a risk management system. The OHSAS approach enables organizations to identify their hazards and determine the risks that are not acceptable and need to be controlled. The overall aim of the OHSAS 18000 standard series is to support and promote good occupational health and safety practices, including self regulation, in balance with organization's and socio-economic needs.The OHSAS 18001 was developed by the OHSAS Project Group, a consortium of 43 organizations from 28 countries. This consortium includes national standards bodies, registrars (certification bodies), OH&S institutes, and consultants. The standard series OHSAS 18000 is not a standard of International Standardization Organization. The OHSAS 18000 series has two publications:
- OHSAS 18001 Occupational health and safety management systems – Requirements
- OHSAS 18002 Occupational health and safety management systems — Guidelines for the implementation of OHSAS 18001:2007
The OHSAS 18001 specifies requirements for an occupational health and safety management system to enable an organization to develop and implement a policy and objectives which take into account legal requirements and information about occupational risks and to improve their occupational safety and health performance.The OHSAS 18002, as a non-certifiable guideline, quotes the specific requirements from OHSAS 18001 and follows with a generic assistance to an organization for establishing, implementing or improving an occupational health and safety management system that encompasses a full range of issues, including those with strategic and competitive implications. The standard OHSAS 18001 can be implemented in any organization to reduce the risks associated with health and safety in the working environment for employees, contracted organizations, customers and the general public. The OHSAS 18001 expects organizations to comply with all of the requirements that make up the standard. According to the standard, organization's occupational health and safety management system must comply with OHSAS 18001 requirement s.The OHSAS has a similar framework to that found in ISO 14001:
- General requirements
- Occupational Health and Safety Policy
- Implementation and Operation
- Management review
The annexes of the OHSAS 18001 inform the correspondence between the standards in question:
- Annex A (informative): Correspondence between OHSAS 18001:2007, ISO 14001:2004 and ISO 9001:2000
- Annex B (informative): Correspondence between OHSAS 18001, OHSAS 18002, and the ILO-OSH:2001 Guidelines on occupational safety and health management systems
It is essential that occupational safety and health issues are involved within an organization's day-to-day activities and that they are an integral part of their overall management system. An ignorance of the importance of this aspect can result in major problems could it lead to accidents or ill-health problems and to loss of valuable employees, loss of contracts and also production and services. The consequence of this issue can also lead to a significant additional cost to the organization.The occupational safety and health management is aimed at prevention so that the approach in OHSAS 18001 is proactive. It means that the system should not only prevent accidents happening again but also prevent happening accidents at all. It requires a careful identification of hazards, risk assessments and determined controls up-to-date.A reducing of the risks can be achieved by technically, organizationally and personally measures:
- engineering controls,
- signage/warnings and/or administrative controls,
- personal protective equipment.
The OHSAS 18000 management standard series has the following main focus:
- developing an occupational health and safety policy for the organization
The policy put that the organization supports the establishment of an occupational health and safety management system clearly. It should also make it clear that you are committed to improving health and safety performance
- establishing an occupational health and safety management system
An occupational health and safety management system is a set-up of interrelated elements. These elements include responsibilities, staff, authorities, other stake holders, relationships, functions, processes, practices, procedures, and resources.
- identifying the hazards, assessment of risks and risk control
The organization identifies hazards in order to determine objectives for the improvement of its occupational health and safety management system. Identified risks need to be evaluated in order to allow control of relevant risks.
- clarifying the legal and other requirements and evaluating compliance with them
The organization ensures that the applicable legal requirements and other requirements are taken into account in establishing, implementing and maintaining its occupational health and safety management system.
- setting e occupational health and safety objectives and targets
The organization's objectives and targets address significant occupational health and safety aspects and are consistent with his occupational health and safety policy.
- establishing programs for achieving the occupational health and safety objectives and targets
The responsibilities, resources and scheduling to achieve the objectives and targets are established.
- implementing and operation of the occupational health and safety management system
The relevant workplaces, processes, system, equipments, and methods should be identified, planned, controlled and documented in accordance with the occupational health and safety management system.
- evaluation of the occupational health and safety management system
The organization's management system is to review at planned intervals to ensure its continuing suitability, adequacy and effectiveness. Reviews include assessing opportunities for improvement and the need for changes to the occupational health and safety management system, including the occupational health and safety policy as well as objectives and targets. Benefits of OHSAS 18001 can be summarized as:
- compliance with legal and other requirements,
- employee satisfaction,
- reducing of absenteeism, resulting in increased productivity,
- reducing of work-related accidents and illness
- reducing of costs associated with accidents and illness
- increasing of control of regulatory issues
- Potentially reducing of insurance costs
The standard OHSAS 18001 provides management system approach for occupational health and safety. The standards management model is given below:
The structure of OHSAS system:
- General requirements
- Occupational Health and Safety Policy
- Hazard identification, risk assessment and determining controls
- Legal and other requirements
- Objectives and programme(s)
- Implementation and Operation
- Resources, roles, responsibility accountability and authority
- Competence, training and awareness
- Communication, participation and consultation
- Control of documents
- Operational control
- Emergency preparedness and response
- Performance measurement and monitoring
- Evaluation of compliance
- Incident investigation, nonconformity, corrective action and preventive action
- Incident investigation
- nonconformity, corrective and preventive action
- Control of records
- Internal audit
- Management review
Occupational Health and Safety PolicyThe occupational health and safety policy clearly defines the framework for occupational health and safety relevant objectives as well as a commitment to improving health and safety performance and compliance with relevant legislation, including prevention of injury and ill health.The communication of the policy to employees, as well as ensuring that they are aware of their own obligations, is an important element. It requires reviewing and, where necessary, updating for continuous improvement. Planning:The planning contents
- establishing and maintaining procedures for the continuing identification of hazards, the assessment of risks and the implementation of necessary control measure,
- identifying of the legal and other relevant requirements those apply to the identified hazards,
- developing of the occupational health and safety objectives and targets, which should documented and communicated throughout the organization and
- establishing of programme(s) for achieving objectives and targets.
Implementation and Operation:
- defining and communicating of roles, responsibility, accountabilities and authorities,
- training of employees whose work can be associated with occupational health and safety risks,
- communication of the occupational health and safety policy, objectives and targets, and other elements of the system to employees and contractors,
- identifying and describing of the core elements of the occupational health and safety management system,
- controlling of the management system documents and procedures,
- maintaining of documented procedures to control operations that could associate with occupational health and safety risks
- establishing of an effective emergency preparedness and response plan.
- monitoring and measurement of organization's occupational health and safety performance incl. the proactive and reactive measures
- dealing with nonconformance found in the occupational health and safety management system efficiently, including the actions to be taken to record, investigate and analyze incidents and initiating corrective and preventive actions,
- Identifying and maintaining of occupational health and safety records and
- conducting of occupational health and safety audits periodically.
Management ReviewTop management reviews periodically occupational health and safety management system in order to ensure, that the system is suitable, adequate and operating effectively. This review provides decisions and actions related to possible changes to occupational health and safety policy, objectives, targets and other elements of the management system, consistent with the commitment to continual improvement. OHSAS 18001 was developed to provide a method of assessing the occupational health and safety management systems in a way that is compatible with both standards ISO 9000 and 14000 series for the quality and environmental management systems.