dcsimg

Occupational Health and Safety Specialists

Occupational health and safety specialists prevent harm to workers, the general public, property and the environment. They implement and evaluate safety programs. They perform inspections and inform a company's management about areas that do not comply with Federal and state laws or employer policies. They are also known as occupational health and safety inspectors and safety and health professionals.

Their responsibilities vary by workplace, industry and the types of hazards that affect workers. Some specialties include, environmental protection officers, health physicists and industrial hygienists. In addition, some occupational health and safety specialists are self-employed.

Safety and health professionals assess the probability and severity of accidents and determine where controls need to be implemented to reduce or eliminate risk. They also monitor the results of new safety procedures and programs.

Safety and health professionals also advise managers regarding the cost and effectiveness of safety and health programs. Some of these specialists provide training regarding new policies and regulations and how to recognize hazards. Occupational health and safety specialists also investigate illnesses and injuries and determine the causes and recommend corrective actions.

Occupational health and safety specialists strive to increase worker productivity, reduce absenteeism and equipment downtime. Their strategies also save money by lowering insurance premiums and workers' compensation payments and by preventing government fines. In addition, some occupational health and safety inspectors work for government agencies and perform safety inspections and impose fines.

Loss prevention specialists work for insurance companies and inspect the facilities insured by the company and suggest improvements and assist in implementing them.

Sample job titles include safety specialist, health and safety manager, corporate safety director, safety consultant, risk control consultant and environmental health and safety manager.

Responsibilities

  • Advise managers about safety performance
  • Offer suggestions to correct existing safety hazards and to avoid creating hazards
  • Evaluate current products, equipment, processes and facilities and those planned for use in the future
  • Prepare documents used in legal proceedings and testify in court
  • Test air quality
  • Help design safe work spaces
  • Make equipment more ergonomic
  • Search for physical, chemical, biological and radiological hazards
  • Conduct safety training sessions
  • Develop and maintain hygiene programs including continuous atmosphere monitoring, noise surveys, asbestos management plans and ventilation surveys

Job Characteristics

Occupational health and safety specialists work in a variety of settings such as mines and factories. They may be exposed to hazardous conditions faced by industrial workers. Most of these specialists work 40 hours per week and some specialists may have to work irregular hours. Some of these specialists frequently travel.

Employment Outlook

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected an eleven percent employment growth for the 2008 to 2018 timeframe which is about as fast as average for all occupations.

In 2008, the median annual earnings for occupational health and safety specialists was $62,250. The highest paid 10 percent earned more than $93,620. Regarding the sectors that employ the largest amount of occupational and safety specialists, the federal executive branch provides the highest salaries followed by general medical and surgical hospitals.

Education, Certification, and Licensing

Most of these jobs require a bachelor's degree in occupational health, safety or a related field such as chemistry, engineering or biology. Some of these jobs require a master's degree in industrial hygiene, health physics or a related subject.

Work experience is very important for this occupation, thus students should consider selecting an education program that provides internships. Some beneficial high school courses are mathematics, English, chemistry, physics and biology.

Every specialist is provided training in the applicable laws or inspection procedures by some combination of classroom learning and on-the-job training. Getting a credential is voluntary, however, many employers prefer their occupational health and safety specialists obtain a credential. The requirements for credentials vary, however, special education and experience is required for taking most certification exams.

Resources

Major Employers

The primary employers are manufacturing companies, scientific and technical consulting services, hospitals; federal, state and local government agencies; support activity for mining, administrative and support services, and educational services.

Schools for Occupational Health And Safety Specialists are listed in the Browse Schools Section.

Metro Areas Sorted by Total Employment for:
Occupational Health and Safety Specialists

Listed below are metro areas sorted by the total number of people employed in Occupational Health and Safety Specialists jobs , as of 2016

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

     
Metro Area (Alabama) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Birmingham 280 $78,320
Hoover 280 $78,320
Huntsville 130 $77,540
Mobile 110 $57,870
Montgomery 80 $66,140
Decatur 60 $67,330
Tuscaloosa 40 $61,090
Oxford 30 $65,180
Jacksonville 30 $65,180
Anniston 30 $65,180
     
Metro Area (Alaska) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anchorage 250 $81,620
Fairbanks 60 $74,820
     
Metro Area (Arizona) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Phoenix 860 $70,210
Scottsdale 860 $70,210
Mesa 860 $70,210
Tucson 150 $66,690
Yuma 50 $60,080
     
Metro Area (Arkansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Conway 210 $58,460
North Little Rock 210 $58,460
Little Rock 210 $58,460
     
Metro Area (California) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anaheim 1830 $80,180
Los Angeles 1830 $80,180
Long Beach 1830 $80,180
San Francisco 1180 $94,790
Oakland 1180 $94,790
Hayward 1180 $94,790
Carlsbad 630 $77,440
San Diego 630 $77,440
Arcade 550 $80,280
Sacramento 550 $80,280
Roseville 550 $80,280
Arden 550 $80,280
San Bernardino 470 $75,790
Riverside 470 $75,790
Ontario 470 $75,790
San Jose 300 $95,880
Sunnyvale 300 $95,880
Santa Clara 300 $95,880
Bakersfield 270 $73,690
Ventura 130 $81,590
Thousand Oaks 130 $81,590
Oxnard 130 $81,590
Fresno 100 $74,180
Lodi 80 $63,670
Stockton 80 $63,670
Santa Maria 80 $78,230
Santa Barbara 80 $78,230
Fairfield 80 $93,520
Vallejo 80 $93,520
Santa Rosa 70 $83,380
Modesto 60 $59,070
Porterville 60 $72,400
Visalia 60 $72,400
Salinas 50 $84,400
Merced 40 $74,520
     
Metro Area (Colorado) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lakewood 880 $79,660
Denver 880 $79,660
Aurora 880 $79,660
Boulder 110 $73,280
Fort Collins 100 $65,830
Greeley 100 $75,590
Colorado Springs 90 $71,120
Grand Junction 40 $65,070
     
Metro Area (Connecticut) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
East Hartford 220 $79,590
West Hartford 220 $79,590
Hartford 220 $79,590
New Haven 150 $78,640
Stamford 140 $77,860
Norwalk 140 $77,860
Bridgeport 140 $77,860
     
Metro Area (Delaware) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Dover 80 $47,610
     
Metro Area (Florida) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
West Palm Beach 450 $66,830
Fort Lauderdale 450 $66,830
Miami 450 $66,830
Tampa 420 $72,650
St. Petersburg 420 $72,650
Clearwater 420 $72,650
Orlando 320 $66,090
Kissimmee 320 $66,090
Sanford 320 $66,090
Jacksonville 240 $63,740
Winter Haven 120 $55,160
Lakeland 120 $55,160
Brent 80 $70,400
Pensacola 80 $70,400
Ferry Pass 80 $70,400
Crestview 70 $71,690
Fort Walton Beach 70 $71,690
Destin 70 $71,690
Fort Myers 60 $55,300
Cape Coral 60 $55,300
Gainesville 60 $58,700
Titusville 60 $82,130
Palm Bay 60 $82,130
Melbourne 60 $82,130
Tallahassee 50 $61,640
Sarasota 40 $61,670
Bradenton 40 $61,670
North Port 40 $61,670
Panama City 40 $68,590
Port St. Lucie 30 $58,190
Deltona 30 $64,920
Ormond Beach 30 $64,920
Daytona Beach 30 $64,920
     
Metro Area (Georgia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Atlanta 600 $70,230
Roswell 600 $70,230
Sandy Springs 600 $70,230
Warner Robins 50 $74,670
Savannah 40 $75,830
Albany 30 $66,650
     
Metro Area (Hawaii) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Urban Honolulu 430 $74,860
     
Metro Area (Idaho) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Boise City 160 $59,530
     
Metro Area (Illinois) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Peoria 120 $82,860
Decatur 50 $57,740
Carbondale 50 $73,370
Marion 50 $73,370
Springfield 50 $77,010
Urbana N/A $67,510
Champaign N/A $67,510
     
Metro Area (Indiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anderson 740 $61,220
Carmel 740 $61,220
Indianapolis 740 $61,220
Fort Wayne 130 $54,930
Goshen 80 $62,480
Elkhart 80 $62,480
Terre Haute 80 $69,350
West Lafayette 50 $64,300
Lafayette 50 $64,300
La Porte 40 $67,600
Michigan City 40 $67,600
Columbus 30 $67,220
     
Metro Area (Iowa) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
West Des Moines 150 $70,640
Des Moines 150 $70,640
Cedar Rapids 80 $61,890
Iowa City 30 $68,600
Dubuque 30 $84,250
     
Metro Area (Kansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Wichita 160 $63,260
Topeka 100 $49,040
Manhattan 50 $60,720
     
Metro Area (Kentucky) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lexington 180 $55,300
Fayette 180 $55,300
Bowling Green 40 $56,430
Fort Knox 40 $62,430
Elizabethtown 40 $62,430
Owensboro 30 $65,000
     
Metro Area (Louisiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Baton Rouge 470 $76,070
New Orleans 300 $68,880
Metairie 300 $68,880
Lake Charles 140 $64,180
Lafayette 130 $69,750
Bossier City 60 $66,040
Shreveport 60 $66,040
Houma N/A $60,770
Thibodaux N/A $60,770
     
Metro Area (Maine) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
South Portland 80 $66,800
Portland 80 $66,800
Bangor 40 $65,460
     
Metro Area (Maryland) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Towson 730 $75,870
Columbia 730 $75,870
Baltimore 730 $75,870
     
Metro Area (Michigan) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Dearborn 750 $77,950
Warren 750 $77,950
Detroit 750 $77,950
Grand Rapids 160 $65,210
Wyoming 160 $65,210
Lansing 90 $67,790
East Lansing 90 $67,790
Portage 70 $56,160
Kalamazoo 70 $56,160
Ann Arbor 70 $74,100
Midland N/A $64,690
     
Metro Area (Minnesota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Rochester 90 $73,060
St. Cloud 80 $70,860
Mankato 30 $71,040
North Mankato 30 $71,040
     
Metro Area (Mississippi) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Jackson 130 $87,780
Pascagoula 100 $61,630
Gulfport 100 $61,630
Biloxi 100 $61,630
     
Metro Area (Missouri) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Jefferson City 70 $45,630
Springfield 40 $39,290
Columbia 40 $60,270
     
Metro Area (Montana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Billings 110 $67,570
Missoula 90 $48,540
     
Metro Area (Nebraska) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lincoln 110 $58,860
Grand Island 40 $57,020
     
Metro Area (Nevada) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Paradise 280 $69,810
Henderson 280 $69,810
Las Vegas 280 $69,810
Reno 110 $68,640
Carson City 50 $53,710
     
Metro Area (New Hampshire) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Manchester 50 $80,340
     
Metro Area (New Jersey) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Trenton 480 $86,150
Hammonton 50 $84,280
Atlantic City 50 $84,280
     
Metro Area (New Mexico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Albuquerque 350 $72,560
Farmington 120 $61,110
Las Cruces 50 $59,560
     
Metro Area (New York) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Troy 430 $71,400
Schenectady 430 $71,400
Albany 430 $71,400
Rochester 290 $58,720
Niagara Falls 260 $65,310
Cheektowaga 260 $65,310
Buffalo 260 $65,310
Syracuse 210 $71,100
Rome 70 $70,420
Utica 70 $70,420
Binghamton 50 $58,910
     
Metro Area (North Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Raleigh 320 $62,340
Chapel Hill 180 $79,340
Durham 180 $79,340
Salem 100 $56,720
Winston 100 $56,720
Wilmington 100 $82,550
Greensboro 90 $62,010
High Point 90 $62,010
Fayetteville 80 $75,670
Asheville 60 $55,640
Jacksonville 60 $69,130
New Bern 40 $67,160
Hickory 30 $63,890
Lenoir 30 $63,890
Morganton 30 $63,890
     
Metro Area (North Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Bismarck 60 $77,930
     
Metro Area (Ohio) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Columbus 880 $72,070
Cleveland 570 $72,830
Elyria 570 $72,830
Dayton 310 $68,800
Toledo 230 $69,820
Akron 210 $74,870
Massillon 130 $60,370
Canton 130 $60,370
Lima 50 $78,620
Mansfield 40 $64,820
     
Metro Area (Oklahoma) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Oklahoma City 520 $63,410
Tulsa 310 $63,630
Lawton 40 $69,400
     
Metro Area (Oregon) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Salem 100 $70,340
Eugene 60 $68,090
Medford 40 $74,860
Albany 30 $62,540
Redmond 30 $67,650
Bend 30 $67,650
     
Metro Area (Pennsylvania) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Pittsburgh 670 $71,690
Harrisburg 230 $66,210
Carlisle 230 $66,210
Lancaster 100 $71,830
Wilkes 100 $72,130
Scranton 100 $72,130
Hazleton 100 $72,130
Barre 100 $72,130
Erie 90 $77,210
Reading 80 $68,100
Hanover 70 $69,000
York 70 $69,000
Johnstown 50 $71,030
Williamsport 40 $56,520
     
Metro Area (Puerto Rico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Caguas 600 $34,960
Carolina 600 $34,960
San Juan 600 $34,960
     
Metro Area (South Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Columbia 480 $50,060
North Charleston 300 $54,290
Charleston 300 $54,290
Mauldin 140 $51,140
Anderson 140 $51,140
Greenville 140 $51,140
Florence 60 $46,540
Spartanburg 60 $55,860
Beaufort 50 $56,420
Hilton Head Island 50 $56,420
Bluffton 50 $56,420
     
Metro Area (South Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Sioux Falls 80 $59,970
Rapid City 40 $69,140
     
Metro Area (Tennessee) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Franklin 510 $68,720
Nashville 510 $68,720
Murfreesboro 510 $68,720
Davidson 510 $68,720
Knoxville 340 $76,520
     
Metro Area (Texas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Sugar Land 4600 $77,510
Houston 4600 $77,510
The Woodlands 4600 $77,510
Arlington 2000 $72,110
Dallas 2000 $72,110
Fort Worth 2000 $72,110
New Braunfels 1060 $54,990
San Antonio 1060 $54,990
Austin 760 $69,490
Round Rock 760 $69,490
Port Arthur 300 $71,480
Beaumont 300 $71,480
Midland 250 $79,840
Corpus Christi 240 $69,450
El Paso 190 $57,050
Temple 170 $68,890
Killeen 170 $68,890
Odessa 140 $62,200
Longview 100 $60,800
Brownsville 90 $39,100
Harlingen 90 $39,100
Bryan 90 $59,400
College Station 90 $59,400
Lubbock 80 $59,390
Waco 80 $65,320
Amarillo 80 $78,030
Tyler 70 $58,840
Edinburg 50 $48,030
McAllen 50 $48,030
Mission 50 $48,030
Wichita Falls 40 $52,620
Laredo 40 $68,790
Victoria 30 $51,880
Abilene 30 $54,340
     
Metro Area (Utah) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Salt Lake City 410 $71,030
Clearfield 130 $71,020
Ogden 130 $71,020
Orem 60 $53,520
Provo 60 $53,520
     
Metro Area (Vermont) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
South Burlington 50 $70,410
Burlington 50 $70,410
     
Metro Area (Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Richmond 550 $59,970
Charlottesville 100 $60,960
Roanoke 90 $56,190
Lynchburg 60 $49,860
Radford 50 $44,800
Blacksburg 50 $44,800
Christiansburg 50 $44,800
Staunton 50 $52,040
Waynesboro 50 $52,040
Harrisonburg 40 $49,080
     
Metro Area (Washington) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Bellevue 1030 $81,280
Seattle 1030 $81,280
Tacoma 1030 $81,280
Richland 350 $89,700
Kennewick 350 $89,700
Silverdale 120 $80,240
Bremerton 120 $80,240
Spokane 110 $61,940
Spokane Valley 110 $61,940
Olympia 100 $62,610
Tumwater 100 $62,610
Bellingham 80 $73,530
Yakima 50 $62,690
Longview 40 $63,150
     
Metro Area (West Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Charleston 120 $75,750
Morgantown 90 $77,130
Beckley 80 $80,490
     
Metro Area (Wisconsin) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
West Allis 230 $67,670
Waukesha 230 $67,670
Milwaukee 230 $67,670
Madison 220 $62,610
Green Bay 70 $61,380
Appleton 70 $66,400
Wausau 40 $50,170
Oshkosh 40 $59,060
Neenah 40 $59,060
Eau Claire 40 $67,340
Fond du Lac 30 $40,550
     
Metro Area (Wyoming) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Cheyenne 40 $65,180
Casper 40 $70,660

Career Stories (Job Profiles) for Occupational Health and Safety Specialists

To find out more about building a career as Occupational Health Specialists, we spoke with professionals in the field across a variety of specialties. Learn about their experiences on the job, the steps they took to complete their education, and what it takes to excel in this industry. Click the link to see a story.

All Types

Most Popular Industries for :
Occupational Health and Safety Specialists

Industries representing at least 1% of total jobs for the occupation.

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

Industry Jobs Percent Annual Median Salary
Government 20,940 39% $62,120
Professional And Technical Services 5,450 10% $62,810
Hospital 3,330 6% $63,170
Education 2,090 3% $55,200
Chemicals 1,630 3% $64,430
Business Management 1,450 2% $67,950
Automotive And Vehicle Manufacturing 1,190 2% $67,110
Utilities 1,160 2% $72,040
Waste Management 1,070 2% $71,570
Office Services And Staffing 1,040 1% $61,200
Medical Office 890 1% $52,600
Food 820 1% $49,020
Mining Services 770 1% $60,770
Metals 720 1% $59,210
Insurance 670 1% $66,750
Construction Trades 650 1% $56,640
Construction 600 1% $64,420
Mining 550 1% $65,760
Metal Products 530 1% $58,720
Click the Visit School Site buttons to go directly to a school's website and learn more about the school and programs it has to offer. School website will open in a new tab.
Click the Request Info buttons to request more information from a representative at the school.
 
Results:  9
Matching School Ads
Programs
  • Homeland Security Certificate
  • Criminal Justice - Homeland & International Security (Bachelor of Science) - Online
  • Threat Assessment & Management in Schools (Certificate) - Online
  • For the 12th consecutive year, Cal U was named one for the best schools in the Northeast by The Princeton Review 
  • Recognized by the U.S. News and World Report for: Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s 2017, Best Online Programs, Grad Education 2017 and Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s for Veterans 2017
  • Quality Online courses at Cal U have the same objectives, content and learning outcomes as campus-based programs and are taught by the same expert professors.
  • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost. Student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1
  • CAL U online programs complete an annual assessment of student learning to ensure outcomes are focused on your success in career entry, advancement or enhancement!
Programs
  • MS in Criminal Justice - Homeland Security Track
  • MS in Criminal Justice - Federal Law Enforcement Track

Founded by the Society of Jesus in 1851, Saint Joseph's University (SJU) has been developing the minds and abilities of men and women in a challenging academic environment steeped in the enriching Jesuit tradition of cura personalis (care of the entire person). The strong liberal arts foundation promotes an environment of open-minded investigation and debate and attends to developing students beyond their academic accomplishments, while maintaining high academic standards. The University strives to be recognized as the preeminent Catholic comprehensive university in the Northeast.

Programs
  • A part of the Select Education Group (SEG).
  • Offers several scholarship and financial aid opportunities for students who qualify.
  • California campuses accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), and accreditation for the Salem campus from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).
  • 4 Campuses located in Clovis, Modesto, and Redding in California, and Salem, Oregon.
camnpus icon
Clovis
Request Info
Programs
  • Degree - Criminal Justice: Corrections
  • Many programs require externships, allowing students to gain real-world experience.
  • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1984.
  • Offers 22 accelerated, career-focused program options including business administration, medical assisting, and more.
  • Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
  • 11 campuses across California, with an online division as well.
camnpus icon
Fresno
Request Info
Programs
  • Has students attend one four-week class at a time and take their final exam before moving on to their next class.
  • Offers 24/7 online tech support, with a typical response time of 4 hours or less.
  • Has online help centers that offer assistance with writing, statistics, medical assisting, and more.
  • Provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.
  • Researches trends for growing fields to tailor a more effective curriculum.
Programs
  • Criminal Justice (11-Month Diploma Program)
  • Dedicated to providing  career training since 1975.
  • Has 13 campus locations in Southern California and a campus in Morrow, GA.
  • Provides flexible class times including weekends.
  • Offers curriculum that ranges from 8 month diploma programs to 16-month Associate of Applied Science degree programs.
  • Has admissions professionals available to help students decide which diploma or degree program they should pursue.
  • Gives job placement assistance strengthened by relationships with local employers.
Programs
  • Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice
  • Ranked among the 2015 Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Designated as a Military Friendly School every year since 2012 by Victory Media.
  • Offers credit for prior learning and experience through assessment tests.
  • Provides a short term Leadership Certification program in partnership with EQUIP®.
  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
Programs
  • Criminal Justice (BS) (Online)
  • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
  • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
  • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
  • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
  • Features a competency-based MBA program that allows students to test out of subjects based on prior professional experience.
Programs
  • Criminal Justice - D.B.A.
  • Homeland Security Leadership & Policy - D.B.A.
  • MS Organizational Leadership - Criminal Justice
  • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor's Programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Implements a one-to-one teaching model, partnering one student with one faculty member in each course.
  • 100% of faculty members hold doctoral degrees.
  • No physical residency requirements, allowing students to pursue their degree online.
  • Committed to innovation, diversity, excellence, and accountability since its founding in 1996.
  • Offers several programs in business, education, psychology, and more.

We have some additional detailed pages at the state level for Occupational Health and Safety Specialists.

Numbers in parentheses are counts of relevant campus-based schools in the state; online schools may also be available.

Back to Top
SPEAK TO AN ADVISOR 1.844.285.6104