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NEW Visit the Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution Standard Page
for information on the new final rule.

Electricity has long been recognized as a serious workplace hazard. OSHA's electrical standards are designed to protect employees exposed to dangers such as electric shock, electrocution, fires, and explosions. Electrical hazards are addressed in specific standards for the construction industry.

OSHA Standards

State Standards

There are twenty-eight OSHA-approved State Plans, operating state-wide occupational safety and health programs. State Plans are required to have standards and enforcement programs that are at least as effective as OSHA's and may have different or more stringent requirements.

This section highlights OSHA standards, frequently cited standards, directives (instructions for compliance officers), and standard interpretations (official letters of interpretation of the standards) related to electrical hazards.

Frequently Cited Standards

OSHA maintains a listing of the most frequently cited standards for specified 2-6-digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes. Please refer to OSHA's Frequently Cited OSHA Standards page for additional information. For Construction of Buildings use NAICS code 236, for Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction use NAICS code 237, and for Specialty Trade Contractors use NAICS code 238 in the NAICS search box.

Other Highlighted Standards

Construction Industry (29 CFR 1926)

  • 1926.400, Introduction
  • 1926.402, Applicability
  • 1926.403, General requirements
  • 1926.404, Wiring design and protection
  • 1926.405, Wiring methods, components, and equipment for general use
  • 1926.406, Specific purpose equipment and installations
  • 1926.407, Hazardous (classified) locations
  • 1926.408, Special systems
  • 1926.416, General requirements (Electrical)
  • 1926.417, Lockout and tagging of circuits
  • 1926.431, Maintenance of equipment
  • 1926.432, Environmental deterioration of equipment
  • 1926.441, Batteries and battery charging
  • 1926.449, Definitions applicable to this subpart
  • 1926.950, General requirements (Power transmission and distribution)
  • 1926.951, Tools and protective equipment
  • 1926.952, Mechanical equipment
  • 1926.953, Material handling
  • 1926.954, Grounding for protection of employees
  • 1926.955, Overhead lines
  • 1926.956, Underground lines
  • 1926.957, Construction in energized substations
  • 1926.958, External load helicopters
  • 1926.959, Lineman's body belts, safety straps, and lanyards
  • 1926.960, Definitions applicable to this subpart

For additional information on specific state plans or other general standards, see the general industry Standards section.

Federal Registers

  • NEW Electric Power Generation, Transmission, and Distribution; Electrical Protective Equipment. Final Rules 79:56955-56962, (2014, September 24).
  • Confined Spaces in Construction; Proposed Rule. Proposed Rules 72:67351-67425, (2007, November 28). OSHA is proposing a rule to protect employees from the hazards resulting from exposure to confined spaces in the construction industry and proposing four classifications: Isolated-Hazard Confined Space, Controlled-Atmosphere Confined Space, Permit-Required Confined Space, and Continuous System-Permit-Required Confined Space. The proposed requirements for each type of confined space are tailored to control the different types of hazards.


Standard Interpretations

Hazard Recognition

Many workers are unaware of the potential electrical hazards present in their work environment, which makes them more vulnerable to the danger of electrocution. According to 29 CFR 1926.21(b)(2), "The employer shall instruct each employee in the recognition and avoidance of unsafe conditions and the regulations applicable to his work environment to control or eliminate any hazards or other exposure to illness or injury." The following references aid in recognizing hazards associated with electrical work.

Possible Solutions

A variety of possible solutions may be implemented to reduce or eliminate the risk of injury associated with electrical work. Examples of solutions include the use of insulation, guarding, grounding, electrical protective devices, and safe work practices. The following references aid in controlling electrical hazards in the workplace.

Additional Information

Related Safety and Health Topics Pages


  • Electrical (ZIP*). OSHA Slide Presentation. Assists trainers conducting OSHA outreach training for workers emphasizing hazard identification, avoidance, and control.

*Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 693-2300 for assistance accessing PDF materials.

All other documents, that are not PDF materials or formatted for the web, are available as Microsoft Office® formats and videos and are noted accordingly. If additional assistance is needed with reading, reviewing or accessing these documents or any figures and illustrations, please also contact OSHA's Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 693-2300.

**eBooks - EPUB is the most common format for e-Books. If you use a Sony Reader, a Nook, or an iPad you can download the EPUB file format. If you use a Kindle, you can download the MOBI file format.

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