The Role of Risk Assessment in Technical Documentation

Safe products are not created by magic. Manufacturers and other economic players must ensure that their products are safe to use.  This applies to the entire product life cycle, from production, assembly, operation and maintenance to disposal. All phases of life appeal to different target groups and carry different risks. A simply warn of every danger, then nothing will happen. Or? This is the first step towards warning pollution and legal consequences.

Safety information, warning notices and warning information on the product are the last step on the way to a safe product. Before that, there are still a few important steps to be taken. With the help of a risk assessment, a secure basis is established in product development.

This is not a “one-man show” and certainly not the core task of the technical writer. This task can only be performed in collaboration with all experts in the organization and external specialists.

Take-aways (what they’ll learn in your session)

  • Normative and legal requirements for carrying out risk assessments
  • How should risk assessments be prepared and which pitfalls have to be taken into account?
  • Who prepares risk assessments?
  • What role does the technical writer play in the process?
  • Consequences of missing or poorly prepared risk assessments
  • Examples (positive and negative) and solutions

About the Presenter:

Martin Rieder is an industrial engineer, technical writer and managing director of CAVEO Safety Management & Documentation. He and his team support and advises companies worldwide on the topics of technical safety, employee protection and technical documentation, standards and guidelines. By working closely with specialized lawyers and regulatory authorities, Martin Rieder offers the highest level of expertise in product safety, product liability and product recall issues. He is board member of tekom Austria and tekom Europe, as well as expert member in the Advisory Board Legislation and Standards of tekom Europe. As an expert member of several national and international standardization committees (ISO TC 199 WG 5; ONK 031, 052, 239; OVE TSK H31, DKE GUK 113.1.1) he forces the development of international standards for product safety and technical documentation.

As a lecturer and author in professional publications, he passes on his knowledge. His experience with the requirements of the most important international markets distinguishes him. Martin Rieder likes to point out experiences from good and bad projects and explains the circumstances. In the analysis of accidents, he investigates causes that have sometimes had fatal consequences. This also includes inadequate information of use.