Safety and Health Management Standards and Guidelines: ANSI Z10, OSHA’s New Guideline, ISO 45001, and More

Safety and Health Management Standards and Guidelines: ANSI Z10, OSHA’s New Guideline, ISO 45001, and More


Have you heard of ANSI Z10?

It’s a standard about Safety and Health Management created by The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and ASSP. This is the first article in a series about ANSI Z10 and different safety management standards in general.


We hope you enjoy this introduction to safety management standards. Before you begin, feel free to download our free 10 Steps to Getting Started with Safety Management infographic and know we’ve got additional, even more comprehensive safety management resources waiting for you below.

Various Safety and Health Management Standards and Guidelines

Now let’s begin zeroing in on ANSI Z10.

It’s one of a somewhat-dizzying collection of standards and/or guidelines that focus on safety and health management.

Here’s a list of the ones we’re aware of. Please use the comments section below if you know of some we’ve left off. We can all learn together, right?


This is a national standard (for the US) created by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

ANSI Z10 was originally created by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA). Later, the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) took responsibility for it. I’m sure there’s a fascinating backstory behind all that, but I don’t know it. This ASSE update touches on that issue, but doesn’t go into great detail and I suspect it’s not a barn-burner.

ANSI Z10 is titled “Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems.” That word “systems” in the title is worth noting, because ASSE makes a distinction between a Management System, like they one they promote in ANSI Z10, and a Management Program, like the one proposed by OSHA in their guideline (which is in draft status currently and which we’ll discuss a little more immediately below). For now, be aware of the different terms systems and programs, and know we plan on focusing on that issue in the next article in this series.

ANSI Z10 was revised in 2012. That’s the current version.

ANSI Z10 Image

OSHA Safety and Health Program Management Guideline

This is a guideline created by the American occupational health and safety regulatory agency OSHA.

Notice that this is NOT an OSHA standard or regulation. Or, as OSHA puts it,

“The guidelines are not a new standard or regulation and do not create any new legal obligations or alter existing obligations created by OSHA standards or regulations.”

The guideline is in draft status. You can read more about it here, including keeping up with the various comment periods, extensions, and ultimately its final release.

As we mentioned earlier, note that this is about Safety and Health Program Management. That’s different than the ANSI Z10 standard, which is about Health and Safety Management Systems. We’ll cover that in more detail in our next article in this series.

You can read the OSHA guideline in draft form here.

You can also read a bunch of related supporting documents from OSHA, including public meeting transcripts, here. We’ll be basing much of our next article on comments from the public meeting transcripts.

We haven’t yet written an article that specifically covers this OSHA Safety and Health Program Management Guideline. That’s because it’s still in draft form. When they finalize it, we’ll be sure to write up a storm about it. But we HAVE written previously on the topic of Safety and Health Program Management based on materials OSHA has made available in the past–click the link you just passed up if you want to check that out.

We have read the new guideline from OSHA, and our off-the-cuff comment is it’s a helpful source of information and a big improvement over their previous materials. No national health and safety regulator has it easy, and you’ve got to take your hat off to OSHA for slugging their way through all this.

OSHA Safety and Health Image

ISO 45001

This is a safety and health management system standard created by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). According to their website,

“ISO is an independent, non-governmental international organization with a membership of 162 national standards bodies. Through its members, it brings together experts to share knowledge and develop voluntary, consensus-based, market relevant International Standards that support innovation and provide solutions to global challenges.”

ISO 45001 is an Occupational Health and Safety Management System Standard.

This standard is currently in draft form. According to the ISO website, it will be available in final form in October, 2016. (NOTE: 45001 is now final).

You can learn more in this extensive interview about 45001.

If you’re on LinkedIn, there’s a LinkedIn group dedicated to ISO 45001 as well. They do a good job of putting out current information there.

ISO 45001 Image

OHSAS 18001

OHSAS 18001 is an older, internationally applied British Standard (and is also known as BS OHSAS 18001 in Britain).

Because 45001 is now final, 18001 will soon be sunsetted. Our interview about 45001 includes some information for companies planning to make the 18001-45001 migration.


The ILO Guidelines for Health and Safety Management Systems 2001 was created by the International Labor Organization (ILO).

As with OHSAS, we’re not going to spend a lot of time discussing ILO OHSMS 2001. But we congratulate and thank those who created it, and we encourage you to use the comments section below if you have anything you want to share about either of these last two.

AS/NZ 4801

A safety and health management system for Australia and New Zealand.

This was published in 2001 and is current today.

I personally wasn’t aware of this; Geoff Brokenshire told me about this in a LinkedIn discussion. Here’s what Geoff had to say:

“I would like to draw your attention to AS/NZS 4801 “Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems” which is an Australian / New Zealand Standard and is closely aligned to OHSAS 18001. It is my understanding that this standard was one of those used a start point for the creation of ISO45001. This is now an old document being created in 2001 but until ISO45001 becomes official is the basis for health and safety management systems in Australasia.”

Plus: “NZ has jus implemented new H&S legislation which is based on the Australian model. That and the related regulations are available as free PDF downloads from

So hat-tip to Geoff, and thanks.

Similar “Management System” Standards

In discussions of safety and health management systems, standards for other, similar management systems often come up. Here are a few. Again, let us know if you think we should add others.

ISO 9000

A quality management standard from our friends at ISO.

ISO 14000

ISO’s standard on environmental management.

ISO 22000

ISO’s food safety management standard.

ISO 31000

ISO’s risk management standard.

If you have any expertise in any of these standards, we welcome your input about them in the comments section below.

Next In Our ANSI Z10 Article Series

In our next article, which has now been published, we’ll at some anticipated differences between the ANSI Z10 standard and OSHA’s upcoming guideline. We focus a lot of our attention on systems and programs for safety and health management.

Before you move on to the next article in this series, take a moment to DOWNLOAD OUR FREE GUIDE TO RISK-BASED SAFETY MANAGMENT, below.


Free Download–Guide to Risk-Based Safety Management

Download this free guide to using risk management for your occupational safety and health management program.

Download Free Guide


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