OSHA Basics: What Are the OSHA General Industry Regulations?


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If you're new to occupational safety and health regulations, OSHA and the OSHA regulations or standards may be unfamiliar to you and perhaps even confusing.

To help demystify things, we've written this installment in our series of articles titled OSHA Basics to explain to you what OSHA means by "general industry" and what the OSHA general industry occupational safety and health regulations are.

What Does OSHA Mean by "General Industry?"

According to this OSHA Safety and Health Topic webpage, OSHA uses "general industry" to:

...refer to all industries not included in agriculture, construction or maritime.

Easy enough, right? So this includes employers who aren't farming, aren't in construction work, and aren't in maritime.

So for example, if you're creating plastic molds, or building cars, or are creating paper, you're a general industry employer.

So What Are the OSHA General Industry Regulations?

OSHA has different sets of occupational safety and health regulations for employers in different types of industries. As you might have guessed from the definition of general industry quoted in the section above, that includes different sets of regulations for general industry employers, agricultural employers, construction employers, and maritime employers.

OSHA's set of occupational safety and health regulations for general industry are all numbered 1910. You'll find the maritime regulations in 1915, 1917, and 1918. You'll find the construction regulations in 1926. And you'll find the agricultural regulations in 1928.

Click here to view the complete list of 1910/general industry OSHA standards.

Don't Forget about the 1904 Recordkeeping Requirements

In addition to these different sets of regulations for agriculture/maritime/construction/general industry, nearly all employers have to comply with OSHA's 1904 Recordkeeping regulations.

And Don't Forget about the General Duty Clause

PLUS, all employers are also bound by OSHA's General Duty Clause in Section 5.

Read more about the General Duty clause here.

Also, Know about the Special Industries in Subpart R

Finally, make sure you check the lists of regulations for special industries in 1910 Subpart R, which may or may not apply if you're a general industry employer.

Read more about the Subpart R Special Industry Regulations here.

To Learn More About OSHA and OSHA Standards

Read this article to learn more about the OSHA 1910 General Industry and OSHA 1926 Construction standards, and for even more OSHA information, check out our Everything You Always Wanted to Know about OSHA article.

And don't forget to download our free guide to OSHA General Industry Compliance below!

Jeff Dalto, Senior Learning & Performance Improvement Manager
Jeff is a learning designer and performance improvement specialist with more than 20 years in learning and development, 15+ of which have been spent working in manufacturing, industrial, and architecture, engineering & construction training. Jeff has worked side-by-side with more than 50 companies as they implemented online training. Jeff is an advocate for using evidence-based training practices and is currently completing a Masters degree in Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning from Boise State University. He writes the Vector Solutions | Convergence Training blog and invites you to connect with him on LinkedIn.

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