Attachment A

APPLICABILITY OF VERTICAL AND HORIZONTAL STANDARDS

Title 8 Safety and Health Standards are sometimes referred to as either "horizontal" or "vertical" in their applicability to a particular workplace. Most safety and health standards are horizontal or "general," which means they apply to any employer in any industry, e.g., fire protection, working surfaces and first aid. Other standards apply only to a particular industry and are called vertical or "specific," e.g., construction, petroleum or logging and sawmills.

When determining whether a horizontal or vertical standard is applicable to an inspected work activity, compliance personnel shall focus on the activity at the inspected site rather than the nature of the employer's business.

The following general guidelines apply to determining the application of a vertical or horizontal standard:

  1. When a violative condition in a specific industry or in general industry is covered by both a vertical and horizontal standard, the vertical standard takes precedence, even if the horizontal standard is more stringent, and

  2. When the industry affected does not have a vertical standard which covers the violative condition, the horizontal standard shall be cited.

C-2, Attachment A, 09/01/00