Construction Special Emphasis Program

The North Carolina Special Emphasis Programs (SEPs) are part of the NC OSH Division's five year strategic management plan for which its two principal goals are: 1) to reduce the state's workplace fatality rate by at least 2%; and 2) to reduce the state's non-fatal injury and illness rate by at least 5%. For each SEP that applies to a specific industrial sector, similar goals for reducing the fatality rate and/or non-fatal injury and illness rate are applied.

SEP: Construction

Tab/Accordion Items

What are the goals of the construction special emphasis program?

  • To reduce workplace fatalities in affected counties and high activity counties.

  • To reduce workplace injury and illness rates in affected counties and high activity counties.

What is meant by the terms "affected county" and "high activity county"?

  • An "affected county" is one in which more than one incident has occurred which resulted in a fatality.

  • A "high activity county (HAC)" is determined by the total number of building permits statewide divided by 100 (the number of NC counties) to get an average.  Any county above the statewide average for building permits will be considered a high activity county.

What industries are covered by this SEP?

  • NAICS 23 - construction

What are the principal hazard categories on which this SEP is focused?

In addition, the Big Four Hazards in Construction webpage can provide additional information about these hazards.

What regulations are most applicable to this SEP?

OSH has adopted the following regulations that govern the requirements for protection against the four leading causes of fatalities in construction.  Note: Please also check the standards information and activity webpage to see if there has been any recent or upcoming regulatory activity on this topic. 


Other Applicable Standards

The Which OSHA Standards Apply webpage can also help identify other standards that may be applicable to your worksite.

Where can I learn more about this SEP?

Compliance Documents

Operational Procedure Notice: OPN 96, Focused Inspection in Construction, describes the conduct of inspections and related activity under this SEP.

Operational Procedure Notice: OPN 123 - Special Emphasis Program for Construction Activities establishes a Special Emphasis Program to decrease fatalities related to the construction industry.

Hazard Alerts

OSH Hazard Alert 2200 - Dealing With COVID-19 in Construction

A-Z Safety and Health Topics

Additional resources related to this SEP can be found on the A-Z safety and health topics pages including cranes and derricks, fall protection, highway work zone safety, electrical safety, scaffolds, respiratory protection and personal protective equipment.