Follow the steps below to identify the major OSHA oil and gas requirements and guidance materials that may apply to your jobsite.
These steps will lead you to resources on OSHA's website that will help you comply with OSHA requirements and prevent workplace injuries and illnesses.
Step 1: OSHA Requirements Related to Leading Hazards at Oil and Gas Sites
Step 2: Other OSHA Requirements That May Apply to Your Jobsite
Step 3: Survey Your Workplace for Additional Hazards
Step 4: Develop a Jobsite Safety and Health Program
Step 5: Train Your Employees
Step 6: Recordkeeping, Reporting and Posting
Step 7: Find Additional Compliance Assistance Information
The following resources will introduce you to OSHA requirements that address some of the leading hazards at oil and gas sites.
Falls consistently account for the greatest number of fatalities in the oil and gas industry. If you have employees who work six or more feet above a lower level, you must provide fall protection.
Review fall protection information for specific operations or types of oil and gas:
Stairways and Ladders: Working on and around stairways and ladders can be hazardous. Stairways and ladders are major sources of injuries and fatalities among oil and gas workers.
Scaffolding: Do you use scaffolding on your jobsite?
Electrical: Almost all oil and gas employers must consider the hazards associated with electricity (i.e., electric shock, electrocution, fires and explosions).
Trenching and Excavation are among the most hazardous oil and gas operations.
Motor Vehicle Safety/Highway Work Zones: Do you operate motor vehicles on your jobsite or do your employees work in and around highway work zones?
NOTE: Most oil and gas jobsites involve multiple employers (i.e., general contractors, oil and gas managers, subcontractors, etc.). If you perform work on such jobsites, you should review OSHA's Multi-Employer Citation Policy.
In addition to the OSHA requirements covered in Step 1, a number of other OSHA standards may apply to your jobsite. The following items can help you identify other key OSHA standards that may apply and point you to information to help you comply with those standards.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): OSHA oil and gas standards (see 29 CFR 1926.28 and 1926.95) state that employers must require their employees to wear appropriate PPE in all operations where employees are exposed to hazardous conditions or where OSHA's oil and gas standards indicate the need for using PPE to reduce the hazards.
Hand and Power Tools: Hand and power tools are common at nearly every oil and gas jobsite.
Learn more: OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page: Hand and Power Tools
Do you use concrete or masonry products on your jobsite?
Do you use cranes, derricks, hoists, elevators, or conveyors on your jobsite?
Do you conduct welding, cutting, or brazing at your jobsite?
Are you engaged in residential oil and gas?
Are you engaged in steel erection?
Fire Safety and Emergency Action Planning: Oil and gas employers are responsible for the development and maintenance of an effective fire protection and prevention program at the jobsite throughout all phases of the oil and gas, repair, alteration, or demolition work. (29 CFR 1926.24). OSHA recommends that all employers have an emergency action plan. A plan is mandatory when required by an OSHA standard. (29 CFR 1926.35). An emergency action plan describes the actions employees should take to ensure their safety in a fire or other emergency situation.
What if I still have questions?
Learn more: OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page: Fire Safety
Hazard Communication Standard: This standard is designed to ensure that employers and employees know about hazardous chemicals in the workplace and how to protect themselves. Employers with employees who may be exposed to hazardous chemicals in the workplace must prepare and implement a written Hazard Communication Program and comply with other requirements of the standard, including providing Material Data Safety Sheets, training, and labeling.
Learn more: OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page: Hazard Communication
The previous list is not comprehensive - additional OSHA standards may apply to your workplace. In addition, section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, known as the General Duty Clause, requires employers to provide their employees with a workplace that is free of recognized hazards likely to cause death or serious physical harm. Be sure to review OSHA's oil and gas standards (29 CFR 1926)for requirements that may apply to your workplace.
Survey your workplace for additional hazards by:
Find information on workplace safety and health hazards, such as:
Asphalt Fumes: OSHA Safety and Health Topic
Distracted Driving: OSHA Web Page
Hazardous and Toxic Substances: OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page
Laser Hazards - Oil and gas: OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page
Lead - Oil and gas: OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page
Occupational Noise Exposure - Oil and gas. OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page
Silica, Crystalline - Oil and gas. OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page
Toxic Metals- OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page
When conducting the wellsite analysis, it's important to look for hazards that are generally recognized within the oil and gas industry. OSHA will require that recognized hazards which are generally foreseeable on the wellsite are properly eliminated or controlled.
As described in OSHA's Field Operations Manual, recognition of a hazard is established on the basis of industry recognition, employer recognition, or "common sense" recognition criteria.
OSHA's oil and gas standards require oil and gas employers to have accident prevention programs that provide for frequent and regular inspection of the jobsites, materials, and equipment by competent persons designated by the employers. See 29 CFR 1926.20(b).
NOTE: OSHA's Oil and gas Focused Inspection Policy recognizes the efforts of responsible contractors who have implemented effective safety and health programs, and encourages other contractors to adopt similar programs. Contractors who have implemented effective programs are eligible for focused inspections, should they be visited by an OSHA inspector. Focused inspections, which are narrower in scope than comprehensive inspections, target the leading oil and gas hazards. See Focused Inspections in Oil and gas.
For help in developing a program:
Learn about OSHA requirements and resources for training oil and gas workers by:
NOTE: If your workplace is in a state operating an OSHA-approved state program, state plan recordkeeping regulations, although substantially identical to federal ones, may have some more stringent or supplemental requirements, such as for reporting of fatalities and catastrophes. Contact your state program directly for additional information.
Where can I find additional information targeted to the oil and gas industry?
Where can I find a collection of OSHA resources designed for smaller employers?
Where can I find resources for Spanish-speaking employees?
Where can I find information on employing teenage or young workers?
Where can I find information on musculoskeletal disorders at the workplace?
Has OSHA developed any compliance assistance information targeted for my specific oil and gas industry?
How can I find OSHA's guidance on preparing workplaces for pandemic influenza?
How do I find out about OSHA's voluntary programs and other ways to work cooperatively with OSHA?
What if I still have questions?
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