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How To Create A Construction Safety Plan

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29 CFR 1926.20(b)(1) requires construction employers to have an accident prevention program. You are here - which means you are ready to get started. Terrific! We've put together this guide which will provide everything you need to establish a written accident prevention program for construction.

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Step One

Review The OSHA Small Business Handbook

The OSHA Small Business Handbook is a great way to get started with your safety program. It will walk you through the basic requirements, provides self-inspection checklists, and helpful guidance. Most importantly, it's free!

Step Two

OSHA Requirements For Most Construction Employers

These OSHA rules apply to most construction employers. Download the checklist to help identify areas for you to focus on.

Falls & Working At Heights

Identify and eliminate fall hazards. For fall hazards that cannot be eliminated, provide fall protection equipment, training, and a rescue plan.

Any workplace were employees are six feet or more above a lower level, or are at risk of falling into hazardous equipment.

Emergency Action Plans

Fire, emergency evacuation, and emergency action plans must be developed for all foreseeable emergencies.

All employers.

Stairways and Ladders

Provide safe stairway and ladder systems. Train employees on safe ladder use.

When stairways and ladders are used on the jobsite.


Identify potential electrical hazards. Provide electrically safe equipment and protection devices. Provide electrical PPE when required. Train employees on management of electrical hazards.

When employees are exposed to potential electrical hazards or use electrical equipment.

Trenching & Excavations

Design trenches and excavations in accordance with requirements. Provide trench protection systems. Train employees on safe trenching and excavation practices.

When employees work in or around trenches and excavations.

Motor Vehicle Safety / Highway Work Zones

Develop and provide traffic management safety plans as required. Provide high visibility garments. Protect employees from traffic hazards.

Where employees operate vehicles on the jobsite or work in or near highway work zones.

Step 3

Identify Specific Job Site Requirements

These safety regulations apply to many construction companies.

A high building under construction with three cranes


Provide properly designed scaffolding systems. Train employees to work safely on scaffolding and scissor lifts.

Where employees perform work on scaffolding or scissor lifts.

Hazard Communication

Create a written hazard communication program. Provide safety data sheets. Label chemicals in the workplace. Inform and train employees on hazard communication communication methods and hazardous chemical use.

Any business where employees use hazardous chemicals.

Hand and Power Tools

Provide safe hand and power tools. Train employees on inspection and use.

When workers use hand and power tools.

Respirable Crystalline Silcia

Create a written silica exposure control plan. Perform silica exposure monitoring. Provide silica engineering controls and PPE as required. Train employees on silica hazards and protection from those hazards.

Any business with hazards that cannot be eliminated with substitution of materials, engineering controls, or work practices.

Concrete & Masonry Construction

Evaluate the capacity of a concrete structure before placing loads on it. Guard equipment against impalement. Keep employees clear of tensioning operations. Provide PPE as required.

Where employees are involved in concrete and masonry construction.

Cranes, Derricks, Hoists, Elevators & Conveyors

Provide safe and appropriately rated equipment. Train employees on inspection and use of equipment.

When lifting, hoisting, or conveying equipment is used.

Confined Spaces

Use a permit entry system for confined spaces, perform confined space monitoring, provide for rescue, and train employees.

When employees enter spaces that are large enough for an employee to enter, have limited means of entry or exit, and are not designed for continuous occupancy.

Welding, Cutting, and Brazing

Use appropriate equipment. Implement fire prevention measures and fire watches as required.

When welding, cutting, and brazing is performed.

Steel Erection

Develop site layout and site specific erection and construction plans. Perform steel erection work in accordance with requirements. Protect employees from hazards of steel erection.

When employees perform steel erection work.

Step 4

Start a Written Construction Safety Plan

Document your OSHA required Accident Prevention Program with the Construction Safety and Health Program. It is a easy to use and professional template that covers the major OSHA requirements for construction companies. It includes a site specific safety plan template.

Construction Safety and Health Program

The Construction Safety and Health Program will you get you quickly started on a construction accident prevention program. It includes a basic construction safety plan, and all the items listed in Part 2 - OSHA Requirements For Most Construction Employers. Contents include:

Basic Safety & Health Program

Injury & Illness Recordkeeping

Vehicle & High Work Zones

Stairways & Ladders

Electrical Safety

Job Hazard Analysis

Fall Protection

Fire Prevention

Hazard Communication

Trenching & Excavation


Emergency Action Plans

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Safety Program

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Free Construction Safety Program Templates

Note: These programs are free and available to the public. They are not owned or endorsed by XO Safety.

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Michigan Licensing & Regulatory Affairs Accident Prevention Program for Construction

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Texas Workers Compensation Commission Sample Written Program

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NASA / Jet Propulsion Laboratory Sample Construction Safety Plan

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Wyoming Workforce Construction Safety and Health Program

Use The OSHA Recommended Practices For Construction Safety Plans

The Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs in Construction is a great reference guide for establishing a compliant and effective program.