Get A Free Quote
1300 007 782
Call Us On:
1300 007 782
25+ years combined experience
Competitive Rates
G10/RMS Accredited
ISO Certified

What is a Hazard Response Team, and What Do They Do?

July 26, 2023
Hazard Response Team

While any work environment can have its share of various hazards, you’re far more likely to encounter hazards on an industrial site. Hazards come in many forms, such as operating machinery, handling chemicals, workplace injuries, working in confined spaces or at heights, the risk of electrocution, fire hazards, floods, explosions and more. Depending on the nature of the business conducted on an industrial site, all of these hazards may be a possibility.

Workplace health and safety obligations are required to be met by all Australian businesses, but even the safest workplace following the most stringent rules isn’t immune to accidents, or hazards that result in a major problem.

A workplace hazard is a material, piece of equipment or a scenario that has the potential to cause injury, damage or catastrophe. Reducing or eradicating hazards is one part of the overall solution, but what happens when a hazard becomes a reality, creating an emergency situation?

It’s for this very scenario that every industrial site should have a trained and experienced hazard response team on standby, ready to respond instantly. This team can be the difference between life and death in some instances, along with helping to keep any damage to property, equipment and materials to a bare minimum.

This article will be focusing on the importance of a hazard response team in relation to industrial sites, the team’s main responsibilities, how the team is trained, the benefits of having a first response team on-site and more.

What is a Hazard Response Team?

A hazard response unit is an emergency response team that’s been trained to not only spot potential hazards on industrial sites, but also in how to respond to an emergency in a rapid and efficient manner. Having completed specialised training, the team is fully equipped to counter any hazard and dangerous situation that unfolds, including safely handling hazardous materials, the containment of chemical spills, first aid and much more.

Your on-site hazard unit is your first response team should a hazardous incident occur. Ideally, each workday comes to a close without any issues, but it’s good to know that you have a highly-trained team on hand should the need arise. Your professional team will be well versed in spotting problems before they arise, responding quickly in an emergency, as well as having the knowledge and expertise to handle all forms of toxic substances and dangerous materials.

With a hazard response team on standby, trained and ready to respond to an emergency, lives will be saved and damage kept in check due to the rapid deployment of the team.

Hazard Response Team2

What Hazards Do They Respond To?

The safety of personnel is always the top priority of any emergency response team. Protecting workers and the public, attending to injuries, mitigating risks, organising evacuations and wrestling the hazard under control are all duties of the hazard response team.

So, what are some typical instances of workplace hazards and challenges that a team of first responders might face on an industrial site?

Chemical Spills

Any industrial enterprise that stores and uses chemicals and other toxic substances in the operation’s processes is prone to a chemical spill occurring at some point. The first response team has been trained and drilled on what to do. Wearing protective clothing, the team will quickly assess the situation and establish safety parameters.

Anyone in the vicinity of the spill will be evacuated, while persons who have been injured as a result of the spill will be rescued and relocated to a safe area where first aid will be administered. The source of the leak needs to be controlled, if possible, enabling the team to contain and eventually clean up the spill. The affected zone needs to be decontaminated, the air quality monitored and a report filed detailing everything that happened.

Gas Leaks

A hazard response team will be first on the scene in the event of a gas leak anywhere on the premises. Gas leaks pose a number of threats. One is the effects of inhalation of the gas and the second is the possibility of ignition and an explosion. Both threats are extremely dangerous and will require a team of dedicated professionals to clear the area, determine the source of the gas leak and neutralise the threat before anyone comes to any harm.

Gas leaks in confined spaces can be particularly hazardous, as the build up of gas can occur very quickly, posing an even greater threat to personnel working in the confined space. Once again, the air quality will need to be monitored until it reaches a level deemed safe.


Explosions on industrial sites thankfully don’t happen very often but they do sometimes occur. Explosions might be the result of a gas leak or some other flammable substance igniting. In the event of an explosion, the first priority will be evacuating people from the area and tending to the wounded until other emergency services arrive on the scene.

Bomb threats and violence

If an act of violence breaks out or the company receives a bomb threat, it’ll be up to the on-site emergency response team to react to the threat or quell the violent act. A qualified first response team has been trained to deal with just these scenarios and in the event of a bomb threat, they will ensure the entire area is evacuated while waiting for a bomb disposal unit to be deployed.


The risk of a fire outbreak is another potential hazard that any business can face. Fires can start from any number of sources, so having a hazard response team on standby that knows exactly what to do will potentially save lives, as well as minimise any damage that the fire causes. Fast and efficient evacuation of the premises is another key responsibility of the team.


Natural disasters such as floods also present a real hazard to an industrial site. Therefore, having an emergency response team at the ready is essential to protect personnel, perform evacuations and rescues, as well as attempt to contain the flood and minimise damage to buildings, machinery and equipment.

Hazard Response Team3

How Are Hazard Response Teams Trained?

A hazard response team is composed of certified and highly-trained individuals who have been drilled in how to respond to emergencies in rapid time and without mistakes. Following a hazardous incident, the first few moments can be the most critical, and this is where that training, expertise and experience is so invaluable.

When individuals are trained to participate in an emergency response unit for industrial sites, everyone on the team will be an expert when it comes to dealing with all types of hazards, such as gas leaks, chemical spills, fires and explosions, along with natural disasters such as floods. First aid, preparedness procedures, risk management, hazardous material handling and more are covered in-depth in the training.

Hazard spotting and hazard prevention measures are also covered in the training, along with learning how to devise safety plans, monitoring the work environment and recognising potential danger zones early on so procedures can be rectified before an incident occurs.

Where to Hire Hazard Response Teams

If you need a qualified and highly-skilled hazard response team for your industrial site, trust the team at SSTC. We are far more than just a security company, so get in touch today and discover how we can be of assistance.

Site Security & Traffic Control © 2021.