Workplace facilities are regulated principally by standards established under the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act). The OSH Act permits individual states to devise and enforce their own laws and regulations, but only with federal approval, and only if the applicable state plan requirements are as stringent as the corresponding federal standards.
North Carolina has its own occupational safety and health law, the Occupational Safety and Health Act of North Carolina (NC OSHA Act), which has been approved by federal authorities. This means it is a “state plan” state. The state requirements aim to ensure the safety and health of employees through workplace inspections, training, and consultative services. They are in all important respects identical to those established by the federal government (NC Gen. Stat. Sec. 95-126 et seq.).
General duty clauses. Under both the NC OSH Act and the federal OSH Act, employers must provide workplace facilities that are free from recognized hazards that are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees. Employers must do everything reasonably necessary to protect the lives, health, and safety of employees. To the extent that the work safety regulations contain loopholes, this law is intended to fill them. Call the North Carolina Department of Labor (NCDOL) at 919-807-2900 with questions on the state law.
The North Carolina Department of Labor offers a downloadable Guide to Office Safety and Health
. More resources regarding facilities are available by calling 800-625-2267.