Does "Subpart C - General Safety and Health Provisions" Apply to You?

This should be yes, as most of the provisions within subpart C will apply to most employers in construction. Subpart C provides requirements for accident prevention responsibilities, employee safety training and education, first aid and medical attention, fire protection and prevention, housekeeping, illumination, sanitation, personal protective equipment, acceptible certifications, shipbuilding and ship repairing, access to employee exposure and medical records, means of egress, and employee emergency action plans. 

It also includes key definitions for this subpart such as construction work which means work for construction, alteration, and/or repair, including painting and decorating and competent person, which means one who is capable of identifying existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings or working conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees, and who has authorization to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate them.

Rules of construction states "The prime contractor and any subcontractors may make their own arrangements with respect to obligations which might be more appropriately treated on a jobsite basis rather than individually. Thus, for example, the prime contractor and his subcontractors may wish to make an express agreement that the prime contractor or one of the subcontractors will provide all required first-aid or toilet facilities, thus relieving the subcontractors from the actual, but not any legal responsibility (or, as the case may be, relieving the other subcontractors from this responsibility). In no case shall the prime contractor be relieved of overall responsibility for compliance with the requirements of this part for all work to be performed under the contract." For more information regarding these rules, reference rules of construction.

Most employers need to comply with the standard on first aid and medical attention which requires that first aid services and provisions for medical care be available for every employee covered by the construction standards. It also references that the standards prescribing specific requirements for first aid, medical attention, and emergency facilities are contained in subpart D - medical services and first aid.

In addition, employers need to comply with the sanitation standard. This standard references that the health and sanitation requirements for drinking water are contained in subpart D - sanitation which also provides requirements for toilets, food handling, washing facilities, showers, eating and drinking areas, vermin control and change rooms.

Employers also need to comply with the fire protection and prevention standard which requires the employer to develop and maintain an effective fire protection and prevention program at the job site throughout all phases of the construction, repair, alteration, or demolition work. This standard also states that the employer shall ensure the availability of the fire protection and suppression equipment required by subpart F - fire protection and prevention.

Further, employers are responsible for illumination at the job site. This standard states that construction areas, aisles, stairs, ramps, runways, corridors, offices, shops, and storage areas need to be lighted with natural or artificial illumination where work is in progress. It also references minimum illumination requirements for the work area in subpart D - illumination

Lastly, the employer is responsible for requiring appropriate personal protective equipment for all operations where needed to protect employees from hazards or when an OSHA standard requires them. This personal protective equipment standard also references that the standards governing the use, selection, and maintenance of personal protective and lifesaving equipment are provided in subpart E - personal protective and life saving equipment.

In North Carolina, the state specific standard, 13 NCAC 07F .0202 - general safety and health provisions, provides "Personal protective equipment, [paragraph (a)] is amended to read as follows: "(a) The employer is responsible for requiring the wearing of appropriate personal protective equipment in all operations where there is an exposure to hazardous conditions or where this part indicates the need for using such equipment to reduce the hazards to the employees."

More related information can be found on our A-Z safety and health topics page for personal protective equipmentmedical services and first aid and fire prevention plans.

To identify the other standards in subpart C that may apply to you, click on the applicable tab below.

 

Subpart C - General Safety and Health Provisions

Do you have accident prevention responsibilities?

Do you have accident prevention responsibilities?

This should be an automatic yes as the standard on general safety and health provisions states that the employer has the following accident prevention responsibilities:

  • Initiating and maintaining safety and health programs needed to comply with the construction standards
    • Safety and health programs are to include frequent and regular inspections of job site, materials and equipment
  • Locking and tagging of unsafe equipment, machinery, tools, and materials by a competent person
  • Permitting only qualified employees, by training and/or experience, to use equipment and machinery

Qualified means one who, by possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or who by extensive knowledge, training, and experience, has successfully demonstrated his ability to solve or resolve problems relating to the subject matter, the work, or the project.

This standard also includes the following "Compliance duties owed to each employee":

  • Provide personal protective equipment, including respirators, that may be needed for employees to protect themselves as required by the construction standards.
  • Provide training to employees and/or institute a training program as required by the construction standards.

More related information can be found on our A-Z safety and health topics page for personal protective equipmentmedical services and first aidlockout/tagoutaerial liftscranes and derricksstairways and ladderssteel erection and respiratory protection.

Do you need to provide safety training to your employees?

Do you need to provide safety training to your employees?

This should be an automatic yes as you are responsible for ensuring that your employees are trained. The safety training and education standard  states that the employer is responsible for providing safety and health training programs that include recognition and avoidance of unsafe condition and regulations applicable to their environment to control and eliminate hazards or other exposure to illness and injury. It includes employee instruction regarding the safe handling and/or use poisons, caustics, and other harmful substances and be made aware of the potential hazards, personal hygiene, and personal protective measures required.

This standard also requires instruction to employees regarding the potential hazards, and how to avoid injury, and the first aid procedures to be used in the event of injury. In addition, it provides for employee training on the safe handling and use of flammable liquids, gases, or toxic materials shall be instructed in the safe handling and use of these materials.

More related information can be found on our A-Z safety and health topics page for flammable liquidspersonal protective equipmentmedical services and first aidhierarchy of controls and respiratory protection.

Do you need to maintain housekeeping at the job site?

Do you need to maintain housekeeping at the job site?

This should be yes as all employers must comply with the housekeeping standard. The standard addresses keeping work areas, passageways and stairs cleared of debris, form and scrap lumber and protruding nails. It requires removal of combustible scrap and debris at regular intervals and that containers be available for waste, trash, rags and other refuse which should be disposed of during frequent and regular intervals.

Refer to the rules of construction for more information on responsibilities regarding removal of debris at the job site.

Do you have pressure vessels or boilers?

Do you have pressure vessels or boilers?

If yes, then you need to comply with the standard on acceptable certifications. It requires current and valid certifications by an insurance company or regulatory authority for pressure vessels and boilers.

The standard references that more requirements can be found in subparts F - fire protection and prevention and O - motor vehicles, mechanized equipment and marine operations.

Other regulatory information pertaining to pressure vessels and boilers can be found on the NCDOL boiler bureau webpage.

 

Do you build or repair ships?

Do you build or repair ships?

If yes, then you need to comply with the safety and health standards for shipyard employment. The standard on shipbuilding and ship repairing states that shipbuilding, ship repairing, alterations and maintenance performed on ships, except naval ship construction is covered under the Occupational Safety and Health Act and that the safety and health standards in part 1915 - shipyard employment apply.

Do you conduct medical surveillance and/or exposure monitoring?

Do you conduct medical surveillance and/or exposure monitoring?

If you need to comply with any of the health standards, this should be yes as most of the health standards require medical surveillance and/or exposure monitoring. The standard on access to employee exposure and medical records refers to the general industry standards for access to employee exposure and medical records. It applies to all employee exposure and medical records, and analyses thereof, of such employees, whether or not the records are mandated by specific occupational safety and health standards.

This standard is applicable to each general industry, maritime, and construction employer who makes, maintains, contracts for, or has access to employee exposure or medical records, or analyses thereof, pertaining to employees exposed to toxic substances or harmful physical agents.  This standard applies to all employee exposure and medical records, and analyses thereof, made or maintained in any manner, including on an in-house or contractual (e.g., fee-for-service) basis.

This standard provides requirements for the preservation of records as follows: medical records for each employee shall be preserved and maintained for at least the duration of employment plus thirty (30) years and employee exposure records shall be preserved and maintained for at least thirty (30) years. It provides requirements pertaining to record access, trade secrets, employee information, and transfer of records.

It also provides definitions such as:

Exposure or exposed means that an employee is subjected to a toxic substance or harmful physical agent in the course of employment through any route of entry (inhalation, ingestion, skin contact or absorption, etc.), and includes past exposure and potential (e.g., accidental or possible) exposure, but does not include situations where the employer can demonstrate that the toxic substance or harmful physical agent is not used, handled, stored, generated, or present in the workplace in any manner different from typical non-occupational situations.

Employee exposure record means a record containing any of the following kinds of information:

  • Environmental (workplace) monitoring or measuring of a toxic substance or harmful physical agent, including personal, area, grab, wipe, or other form of sampling, as well as related collection and analytical methodologies, calculations, and other background data relevant to interpretation of the results obtained;
  • Biological monitoring results which directly assess the absorption of a toxic substance or harmful physical agent by body systems (e.g., the level of a chemical in the blood, urine, breath, hair, fingernails, etc.) but not including results which assess the biological effect of a substance or agent or which assess an employee's use of alcohol or drugs;
  • (Material) safety data sheets indicating that the material may pose a hazard to human health; or
  • In the absence of the above, a chemical inventory or any other record which reveals where and when used and the identity (e.g., chemical, common, or trade name) of a toxic substance or harmful physical agent.

Employee medical record means a record concerning the health status of an employee which is made or maintained by a physician, nurse, or other health care personnel, or technician, including:

  • Medical and employment questionnaires or histories (including job description and occupational exposures),
  • The results of medical examinations (pre-employment, pre-assignment, periodic, or episodic) and laboratory tests (including chest and other X-ray examinations taken for the purpose of establishing a base-line or detecting occupational illnesses and all biological monitoring not defined as an "employee exposure record"),
  • Medical opinions, diagnoses, progress notes, and recommendations,
  • First aid records,
  • Descriptions of treatments and prescriptions, and
  • Employee medical complaints.

More related information can be found on our A-Z safety and health topics page for recording and reportingmedical services and first aid and hierarchy of controls.

Do you need to maintain a means of egress at the job site?

Do you need to maintain a means of egress at the job site?

This should be an automatic yes. The means of egress standard requires free and unobstructed egress from all parts of the building or structure at all times when it is occupied and that they should be continually maintained. It also provides requirements for marking exits.  

Reference the A-Z safety and health topics on exits and exit routes for more information.

Do you need an emergency action plan?

Do you need an emergency action plan?

To determine whether this applies to you, you need to answer the following questions:

Do you need to comply with any of the following OSHA standards?

If you answered yes, then you must have an emergency action plan that complies with the construction standard on employee emergency action plans as it applies to all emergency action plans required by a particular OSHA standard. The standard requires a written plan that includes emergency procedures and route assignments, procedures for critical plant operations, procdures to account for all employees, rescue and medical duties, emergency reporting procedures, and contact information. The plan should include all types of evacuations based on the emergency circumstances. It also requires an employee alarm system that is used to alert fire brigade members and employees.  

Do you need to comply with any of the following OSHA standards?

If you answered yes, then you must have an emergency action plan that complies with the general industry standard on emergency action plans as it applies to all emergency action plans required by a particular OSHA standard. The emergency action plan standard provides requirements pertaining to oral and written plans, procedures, training, employee alarm systems (i.e.; whistles, horns, lights) (reference the standard on employee alarm systems), and plan review. Note: The above construction health standards refer back to the general industry health standard as they are identical for construction. 

More information can be found on our A-Z safety and health topics page for emergency action plans.