Audits & Inspections – are you doing them for the right reasons?

April 16, 2013

As a software provider we are often asked to suggest different templates for helping clients to manage audits and inspections. The benefits of Quality, Environmental, Health and Safety (QEHS) software tools are that it makes managing all audits and inspections a much easier task. However we want to help clients ensure that they are doing the right type of audits and inspections.

One fundamental question that must be answered is: ‘Why are we doing these audits and inspections?’

The answer is that these activities are a very important control method for managing hazards and risks. And each organisation will have different hazards and risks depending on the nature of their activities. Logically then each organisation would need to have different templates for audits and inspections, but the truth is not so bad.

Management systems have been developed to standardise the way that organisations manage risk. A good audit will then look at each of the elements of the management system and ensure that each part is working as required e.g., training, reviews, documentation etc.


Inspections on the other hand will focus on more specific aspects such as housekeeping or other important controls that need to be kept in order. They are a compliance check. They need to verify that the standards established set by the organisation are being achieved. Of course, if no standards have been set e.g., for housekeeping etc, then of course it’s very hard to say what level of compliance was achieved.

Assuming that you have a robust system in place for identifying hazards and their related controls (please refer to Ask About Risk’s Health & Safety Wiki for a free helpfile for this) then a good reference source would be a publication from the American Chemical Society called Safety Audit / Inspection Manual.

We would be delighted to promote similar reference sources if they become known to us.

If you would like a tool to help you conduct audits & inspections as well as risk assessments, then please visit our website or send an email to

Commuting with care

March 22, 2013

Ask About Risk

car accident

Road casualties in Ireland have been falling since official data has been recorded (1959), reaching the lowest level in 2011(Figure A). According to RSA (Road Safety Authority), the number of road deaths per million in 2001 was 107, more than double the number of casualties in 2011, which was 41. In spite of this, there is still much to do, especially by companies as most of these accidents would have been commuting accidents (occurring during travelling to or from work), and we must consider, not only the number of fatalities, but also the number of road injuries (over 7,000 in 2011).

road fatalities

Figure A. Number of roads deaths per million of population in Ireland, 2001-2011

There is a general unfamiliarity about what commuting accidents are which is why, in the majority of the cases they are not reflected in the statistics. Commuting accidents should be considered as occupational accidents

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Standards for Vibration Risk Assessments

April 26, 2009

Occupational hygiene covers all aspects of identification, evaluation and control of workplace health hazards. Vibration is one of these hazards. I wonder how companies are coping with these types of risk assessment. To be more specific, at what stage does measurement replace risk assessment and the use of manufacturer’s data and HSE points etc. At what point should a risk assessment highlight the necessity for measurement? Does the HSA offer any guidelines on this ? The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work(General Application) Regulations 2007,Chapter 2 of Part 5:Control of Vibration at Work states that “If the information is not available, if it is questionable or the estimated exposure looks like it might be above the exposure limit value, consideration should be given to undertaking exposure measurements”. I often find that this information is not available or difficult to obtain. Wondering if anyone had any thoughts ?

Why EHASoft? Let us introduce ourselves first!

December 6, 2008

EHA Soft Solutions, is an established software company headquartered in Blackrock, Cork. The company has satellite offices in the U.S. in Chicago, Philadelphia. The mission of the EHASoft is to develop and deliver a comprehensive suite of applications designed to help organizations manage risk and compliance associated with environmental, health and safety (EH&S) issues.

In today’s global marketplace, many solutions are custom developed and often do not meet the requirements of practitioners responsible for EH&S management. Our unique suite was designed by and for EH&S practitioners and includes many features that assist them in day-to-day operations and ensures sustained compliance.

Can we help you Master Environmental Health & Safety

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