Safety inspections

Identify unsafe and unhealthy conditions

Inspections are a means to monitor safety and health performance and compliance with OSHA and other regulatory standards.

Information gained from an inspection can help a business with the following items:

  • Recognize the positive results of safety and health programs and policies.
  • Identify and correct hazards before they cause accidents or illnesses.
  • Feel confident that the company will fare well if OSHA conducts its own inspection.
  • Reduce exposure to liability.

Inspections can also heighten awareness and provide a way for employees to get involved in the company’s safety and health program. It can improve communications between management and provide a safer, healthier workplace.

Get focused
The best inspections are focused. One way to identify priorities is to look at illness and injury information such as the OSHA injury log and industry data to identify exposures. Employee complaints can be another source of topic. The next step would be to create the checklist and train individuals on its use.

Monitoring safety performance
It is important that anyone conducting an inspection recognize the importance of working through the entire checklist thoroughly. It may prove helpful to have employees of one department inspect the work area of other departments because it can build a degree of objectivity into the process.

Inspections may be announced or random or even both. Typically, a general inspection helps to identify the hazard and a more in-depth review will look for solutions such as better equipment and additional training. If issues are identified they should be reported and responded to immediately. If everything is in order as outlined in the checklist, employees should be acknowledged for their good efforts.


  • Inspections are a means to monitor safety and health performance.
  • Information gained from inspections helps to recognize the results of a company’s safety program.
  • It is important to work through the entire checklist thoroughly.
  • Issues identified should be reported immediately.
  • If everything is in order employees should be acknowledged for their efforts.
The information provided in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as all encompassing, or suitable for all situations, conditions, and environments. Please contact us at or your attorney if you have any questions. The article may not be linked to, copied, reproduced, republished, posted, or distributed in any way by non-policyholders of Markel®, without permission.