Should You Have Written Safety Rules in the Workplace?


Quick Answer

The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 requires employers in the United States to prepare a written health and safety statement to help prevent accidents and poor health, explains OSHA. Covered employers must also display the OSHA Job Safety and Health poster. Employers in states that have OSHA-approved state plans are exempt from this requirement.

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Full Answer

The primary purpose of developing a written set of safety rules is to decrease the incidence of injuries and illnesses, states OSHA. Preparing and implementing safety policies helps businesses financially by reducing health care costs. Such policies also reduce costs of repairing machinery, help better manage insurance costs, and lessen potential court costs.

Having written safety rules conveys the management's commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of employees, notes Safety Health and Security Associates. It helps employees recognize that business success and employee safety are compatible, while also increasing buy-in across an organization. Written policies also establish the employer and employee's role in workplace health and safety.

Part of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 requires employers to display any Occupational Safety and Health Administration and U.S. Department of Labor documents, including specific health and safety standards, in conspicuous areas, states OSHA.

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