Risk Assessment Matrix

Risk Definition and Classification

Table 1: Qualitative measures of likelihood or exposure to a hazard
Level Descriptor Description Interval
A Certain The event is expected to occur in most circumstances Daily
B Likely The event will probably occur in most circumstances Bi-monthly
C Possible The event should occur at some time Yearly
D Unlikely The event may occur at some time Plant life
E Rare The event may occur only in exceptional circumstances Ever
Table 2: Qualitative measures of consequence or impact
Level Descriptor Example of detail description
1 Insignificant No injuries, no financial loss
2 Minor First aid treatment, on-site release immediately contained, medium
3 Moderate Medical treatment required, on-site release, contained with outside assistance, high financial loss
4 Major Extensive injuries, loss of production capability, off-site release with no detrimental effects, major financial loss
5 Catastrophic Death, toxic release off-site with detrimental effect, huge financial loss

Note: Measures used should reflect the needs and nature of the organisation and activity under study

Table 3: Qualitative risk analysis matrix – hazard priority
Likelihood Consequence
1 2 3 4 5
Insignificant Minor Moderate Major Catastrophic
High High Extreme Extreme Extreme
Moderate High High Extreme Extreme
Low Moderate High Extreme Extreme
Low Low Moderate High Extreme
Low Low Moderate High High

Note: The number of categories should reflect the needs of the study.

Risk Level Priority Example of Action
Extreme 1 Detailed research and planning required, cease activity or task
High 2 Senior management attention, immediate corrective and preventative actions
Moderate 3 Corrective and preventative action plan, responsibility assigned
Low 4 Manage by routine procedure