Small Business Safety and Health Handbook


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) developed this handbook to provide small business employers with workplace safety and health information.

The handbook summarizes the benefits of an effective safety and health program, provides self-inspection checklists for employers to identify workplace hazards, and reviews key workplace safety and health resources for small businesses.

This handbook is a general guide. Employers should not use it to assess compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act) or federal OSHA standards. This handbook does not provide legal interpretations of the requirements in OSHA standards, nor does it create any additional compliance requirements for employers. OSHA will not cite employers under the General Duty Clause in Section 5(a)(1) of the OSH Act for not following the handbook’s recommendations.

More than 20 states and territories operate their own OSHA-approved State Plans. A list of states that operate their own State Plans can be found on OSHA’s website. While the safety and health compliance requirements in these State Plans may differ in some respects from federal OSHA requirements, employers in all states may benefit from using this handbook.

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