Date: December 23, 2020

Doug Sams, Risk Control Consultant

The 5-Minute Job Safety Analysis (JSA)

A Job Safety Analysis is a process that examines individual job tasks by breaking the job apart into specific tasks and identifying potential hazards and controls. The W.H.A.T. JSA is a pre-job planning thought process. It considers the worker, task, tools, and environment. Here is a breakdown of each step with examples to help you complete a W.H.A.T. JSA for your next job.

Worst Case 

Begin by asking yourself, "What are you doing?" and "What is the worst-case scenario?" Consider Focus 4 Hazards, which include: falls, caught –in or –between, struck-by, and exposure to live electrical.

List the steps of your assigned job/task. Task examples include excavating a trench, layering limestone, laying pipe, tying into an existing manhole, limestone cover, and backfill.

Then, list the worst-case scenario(s) of the job. A few examples of scenarios include a trench cave-in, a hazardous atmosphere in a confined space, or being struck by equipment.

Hazard Identification 

Next, think about what hazards your work and/or environment create for you and others? Examples of hazards include falling into the trench or manhole, trench cave-in, struck-by vehicles or equipment in work zones, struck by a suspended load, caught in/between the pipe and side of the trench, contact with live electrical, or confined space entry.

Actions To Take

What actions do you need to take to control the hazards identified? Do you need to:

  • Erect a barricade to keep others away from the trench?
  • Slope the trench to prevent cave-in?
  • Complete Confined Space Permit? Hot Work or other permits?
  • Do you need to do Lockout/Tagout? Plug an inlet pipe?
  • PPE – Hi-visibility vest, hard hat safety glasses, etc.

Tools Needed 

Finally, what tools (and/or equipment) do you need to do your work safely? Do you need:       

  • Traffic control devices?
  • Trench box and ladder?
  • Air Monitoring equipment?
  • Rescue tri-pod and retrieval system?
  • Ladders for access and egress?

W.H.A.T. is simple, paperless, and can be done in 5 minutes or less. Performing a W.H.A.T. Analysis can help keep you safe by making you think through your task and plan for things that might go wrong. It can also have the added benefit of helping you be more productive.

If you want to learn more about performing a Job Safety Analysis or more ways to stay safe on the job, consult with your BITCO Risk Control Consultant, or find a BITCO agent near you.

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For information purposes only. BITCO's blog content does not address all potential circumstances and is not a substitute for business, safety, or legal consultation.

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