OSHA Standards and Regulations

Resources for Learning about OSHA Regulations

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulates worker safety in the United States and its territories. Health and safety standards are contained in Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulations (29 CFR), and are available online.

In the OSHA CFR, there are several different sections (also called parts) of safety and health standards (also called regulations) applicable to the various types of workplaces regulated by this agency.

OSHA Standards and RegulationsThere are OSHA standards (Part 1903) regulating OSHA inspections, citations, and penalties for all affected workplaces, as well as specific standards for reporting and recording OSHA-recordable injuries and illnesses (Part 1904) that apply to all affected employers who do not fall into the exemptions for size or low-risk industries (although they must still comply with all other applicable OSHA regulations).

Industry Specific Regulations

There are also specific OSHA standards regulating various types of work environments and activities, including but not limited to, General Industry businesses (Part 1910, affecting most manufacturing, service industries, warehouses and distribution centers, and the medical / dental fields), Construction industries (Part 1926, affecting new construction, major renovation work, and demolition work), Agriculture operations (Part 1928), Shipyard Employment (Part 1915, affecting shipbuilding, shipbreaking . . .), Maritime Terminals (Part 1917), and Longshoring operations (Part 1918).

Keep in mind that there are a few Federal OSHA standards from the General Industry (1910) section (such as, but not limited to, respiratory protection programs) that also apply to the other industries (construction, maritime . . .).

OSHA Safety Posters - Training makes a differenceStates operating one of the approved State OSHA Programs also have state-specific safety and health standards that apply to affected workers in their states. Most state OSHA standards closely mirror the Federal OSHA standards with small tweaks to reflect the state-specific differences, However, some of the state OSHA standards are significantly different from those promulgated by Federal OSHA.