Safety and health services perform testing, consulting and analytical activities related to worker protection, industrial hygiene, process accidents, facility dangers, occupational hazards, and consumer product safety. They provide scientific and technical expertise in a variety of health and environmental sciences. Professional staffers include chemists, engineers, toxicologists, and industrial accident prevention specialists. Programs include chemical management, safety engineering, and safety management systems integration. For each program, safety and health services may develop operating procedures, safety fact sheets, brochures, webinars, and other relevant materials.
Safety and health services that specialize in industrial hygiene or occupational hygiene seek to protect and improve the well-being of employees who are exposed to chemical and physical agents in their work environments. Some companies test the effectiveness of local exhaust ventilation systems (LEV), develop metrics for measuring employee health and well-being, and analyze the long-term effects of using metalworking fluids in high-volume manufacturing. Other employee health services (EHS) study manganese exposure in welding operations, or seek to minimize the effects of heat stress. Safety and health services that specialize in nanotechnology examine the environmental effects posed by new classes of nanomaterials.
Safety and health services are responsible for aligning EHS concerns with business objectives, including stated commitments to corporate responsibility (CSR). To this end, they may help companies comply with EHS standards such as OHSAS 18001. OHSAS is an acronym for Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series, an internationally-recognized management system that is based on a British standard (BS).An informal specification, OHSAS 18001 is compatible with ISO 9001:1994 and ISO 14001:1996 management systems from the International Standards Organization (ISO). The OHSAS 18000 standard applies to general industry and features an auditable protocol against which a company’s health and safety management system can be addressed.
To implement OHSAS, safety and health services perform activities that are defined as structure and responsibility; training, awareness and competence; consultation and communication; documentation; document and data control; operational control; and emergency preparedness and response. Safety and health services may also perform checking and corrective action; performance measurement and monitoring; records and records management; and management review activities. An analysis of accidents, incidents, non-conformance, and both corrective and preventive action are also an important part of the OHSAS standard.