California Osha Laws

California OSHA laws protect workers’ health and safety.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration was created to reduce worker injuries and deaths on the job and to promote worker health. The federal OSHA sets the minimum standards for worker safety, including protective gear regulations and guidelines for hazardous materials. In California, OSHA laws are handled by a state agency, which makes the laws for the state.


The California Occupational Safety and Health Administration, more commonly called Cal/OSHA, is the agency responsible for OSHA laws in California. It has jurisdiction over all public and private employees in California except those employed solely by the federal government or the United States Postal Service, or those employed on Native American land.

Independent Standards Board

The independent Standards Board is part of Cal/OSHA and responsible for creating state safety and health regulations and standards. It consists of seven members who are appointed by the governor. The board seeks to update state regulations, for implementation within six months, when the federal standards change. The board also creates standards for some things not covered by federal standards, which include mine safety training, elevators and amusement rides.


California OSHA laws are enforced by the Cal/OSHA enforcement unit. It conducts inspection of workplaces when it receives complaints or reports of an industrial accident, or randomly in industries with high rates of injuries, illnesses or fatalities. The enforcement unit issues notices or citations to companies found to be in violation of OSHA laws.

Safety Training

Cal/OSHA requires that employers train all employees on all hazards they are exposed to on the job. Additionally, employers are required to post notices of hazards and inform employees of their rights under Cal/OSHA laws and regulations. Such notices include providing material safety data sheets for hazardous chemicals employees might be exposed to.

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