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3 x 3 Risk Matirx

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Sample 3 x 3 Risk Assessment Matrix


The matrix works by selecting the appropriate consequences from across the bottom, and then cross referencing against the row containing the likelihood, to read off the estimated risk rating.





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Likelihood (probability)

Consequences (impact)

3. Likely

3.  Extremely harmful

2. Unlikely

2. Harmful

1. Highly unlikely

1. Slightly harmful


The following is a guide to the matrix's risk rating clarification.


Multiplying the Likelihood by the Consequences allows an easy identification of the risk rating.


Score 1 - Insignificant Risk, No action is required.


Score 2 - Low Risk, Largely acceptable, subject to reviews periodically or after significant changes etc.  Consideration maybe given to a more cost effective solution or improvement that imposes little or no additional cost burden.


Score 3 or 4 - Medium Risk, Efforts should be made to mitigate the risk. Risk should only be tolerated for the short term, and then only whilst further control measures to mitigate the risk are being planned and introduced, and these  within a pre-defined time period.  However, the costs of prevention should be carefully measured.


Where the moderate risk is associated with extremely harmful consequences, further assessment maybe necessary to establish more precisely the likelihood of harm, this as a basis for determining the need for improved control measures.


Score 6 - High Risk, Work activities should not be started until the risk has been mitigated. Significant resources may have to be allocated to mitigate the risk. Where the risk involves work in progress, urgent action should be taken.


Score 9 - Extreme Risk, Work should not be started or continued until the risk has been mitigated. If it is not possible to mitigate risk even with unlimited resources, the work should remain prohibited.


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