Occupational safety and health is a matter for the boss. You can perform the risk assessment yourself or engage reliable and competent persons to do so. The assignment must describe precisely which tasks are assigned. It must be in writing and must specifically define the fields of responsibility and the authorities within the framework of your company’s organisation.
However, regardless of who performs the risk assessment, the overall legal responsibility will, in any case, remain with you, the employer. Therefore, exercise your duties of supervision and control regarding the proper performance of the risk assessment. At regular intervals, convince yourself of whether and how the persons in charge assume their responsibility. If you neglect your duties of control, you behave unlawful within the meaning of § 823 BGB ), since an “organisational fault” could be imputed to you. In this case, wronged parties have a claim for damages.
Of course, occupational safety and health initially means additional expenditure. You will find a wealth of reasons for not performing or for postponing a risk assessment in your company. The main argument will surely be the expenses incurred thereby.
However, the expenditure is worth it, since it is low when compared to the benefit!
The following pages contain some arguments intended to make you rethink and to see occupational health and safety not only as an “annoying afterthought” or as a “bureaucratic necessity”, but as a useful instrument for minimising the risk within your company.