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Safety After a Storm

OSHA eMatrix for Hurricane Response & Recovery Work

OSHA Disaster Cleanup and Recover PPE Matrix English / Spanish

OSHA Flood Response and Recovery

OSHA QuickCards and Fact Sheets

5 Tips for Disaster Recovery Safety

Hurricane, Flood and Tornado Recovery Safety Fact Sheet English / Spanish

 Safety at Work Banner

The damage that natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods and tornados leave behind can create serious health and safety hazards for employees responsible for recovery and cleanup – including utility workers, law enforcement and emergency medical personnel, firefighters, and contractors. Hazards include fall and lifting hazards, rodents, snakes and insects, electrocutions, noise, cut/laceration hazards and high ambient temperatures. Flood waters and standing waters pose various risks, including infectious diseases, chemical hazards and injuries.

Even if extensive damage doesn’t occur during a storm, worksite conditions will have likely changed. Some employees may be engaged in non-routine activities as they prepare for businesses to reopen and employees to return to work.

New hazards that could exist include:

  • slips, trips, and falls
  • lifting
  • rodents, snakes and insects
  • electricity
  • noise
  • tree and debris removal
  • cut/laceration hazards
  • heat
  • exhaustion
  • hazardous substances, such as mold, chemicals or carbon monoxide
  • infectious materials
  • changed or compromised road surfaces or structures

Under OSHA regulations, employers are responsible for the safety and health of their employees and for providing safe and healthful workplaces. Employers are required to protect workers from the anticipated hazards associated with the response and recovery operations that they are likely to conduct.

DWC’s safety professionals are available to help employers identify safety and health hazards resulting from the storms and provide guidance on how to fix them. Request free help from DWC’s Occupational Safety and Health Consultation (OSHCON) Program today at 800-252-7031, option 1 or We can help you at your worksite or over the phone.

The following resources can help employers and employees prevent injuries and illnesses related to hurricane and flood recovery and clean up.

DWC Training

DWC can provide affordable safety training at an employer’s worksite, depending on availability and access after the storm. Free training on many topics can be done via teleconference or webinar. Training seminars may also be available in your area. Call 800-252-7031, option 2 or email for more information.

DWC Publications

DWC Free Training DVD Loans

Other Resources

For more information, contact:

Last updated: 4/3/2018