The organizations called OSHA and ANSI are frequently mentioned in the workplace. Do you know who they are? OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) is the main federal agency in charge of enforcing safety and health legislation. ANSI (American National Standards Institute) is a private, non-profit organization that produces industrial standards in the United States.
Many people speak of OSHA and ANSI as if they are interchangeable. The truth of the matter is they are not. OSHA standards and regulations mandate the use of a product, but they do not specific how a product is certified. In this case, OSHA PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) standards require that hard hats meet strict ANSI standards. OSHA officials routinely participate in the development of these standards, alongside ANSI in their efforts to promote workplace safety.
ANSI certifies safety products according to voluntary consensus standards and conformity assessment systems. The Institute oversees the creation, promotion and use of thousands of norms and guidelines that directly affect businesses in nearly every sector: from acoustical devices to construction equipment, from dairy and livestock production to energy distribution, and many more. ANSI is also actively engaged in accrediting programs that assess conformance to standards – including globally recognized cross-sector programs such as the ISO 9000 (quality) and ISO 14000 (environmental) management systems.
There now that you have all the correct information, spread it on to your fellow co-workers. It never hurts to be a well informed employee.