Construction Law

OSHA’s Hierarchy of Controls featured image

OSHA’s Hierarchy of Controls

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration’s (OSHA) primary objective is to protect the safety and well being of employees by controlling exposure to unsafe working conditions that could potentially result in injury, illness, or death. In order for employers to effectively protect workers, businesses are required to implement OSHA’s hierarchy of controls which outlines the most to the least effective workplace safety measures. If you are a contractor and have been found in violation of OSHA’s rules and regulations, please contact a contractor attorney in Tampa as soon as possible.

Elimination of Hazard & Substitution

The likelihood of employee injury or death are significantly reduced by eliminating hazards altogether from the workplace, as well as substituting materials and workplace practices with less hazardous alternatives wherever possible. To OSHA, these two initiatives are the most important contributors to creating safe working environments. To implement these safety controls, conduct regular site inspections to identify where dangers can be completely removed and continuously seek out safer solutions that lessen inherent job risks that can not be completely eliminated.


The next safety initiative on OSHA’s hierarchy of controls is engineering. Engineering controls refer to structural safety systems put in place to eliminate or minimize employee exposure to risks. An example of this would be the creation of enclosures, barriers, or ventilation systems that minimize employee contact with harmful substances or conditions.


There are a number of administrative controls that can be put in place to reduce employee exposure to workplace hazards. Depending on the extent, your administration and safety personnel could develop protocols such as employee rotation systems, safety training programs, hazard reporting, extended breaks, and many other workplace practices. An experienced Tampa contractor attorney can also provide insight and provide recommendations for additional administrative safety solutions.

Personal Protective Equipment

After all possible hazards have been eliminated or reduced from the workplace using the previous controls on OSHA’s safety hierarchy, the last piece to reducing accidents and injury is through the use of personal protective equipment such as hard hats, hearing protection, goggles, and respirators. While there are mandatory requirements for PPE, there are often additional equipment available to even further promote safety in your workplace. Contractor lawyers in Tampa can often consult your business on additional PPE that can be provided to protect workers.

To schedule a consultation with an experience OSHA attorney from Cotney Attorneys & Consultants, please call us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.