become a health and safety engineer

What does a Health & Safety Engineer do?

The most important role of a health and safety engineer is to develop procedures and safety standards. For example, they develop streamlined processes to ensure workers do not get sick or injured within their work environment. Next, watch a video to learn what a health and safety engineer does.

How to Become a Health and Safety Engineer

According to O*Net Online, most health and safety engineers have a bachelor’s degree. Most health and safety engineers have at least an bachelor’s degree in engineering. However, the type of engineering degree to obtain depends on the industry the person will be working. Types of engineers include: industrial safety and health, fire-prevention and protection, systems safety, aerospace safety, and product safety engineers.

Job Description of a Health and Safety Engineer

health and safety engineer

A health and safety engineer would generally review new equipment workers may be using soon and ensure it can be operated safely in their work environment. They would also inspect a facility for hazardous conditions. They want to ensure the work environment is safe, safety gear is being worn and utilized, and that equipment is properly maintained and safe to use.

Based on their observations, they would recommend additional safety measures and process improvements. For example, they may add a new safety device on a machine, or educate the workforce on the proper use of safety gear, and implement new safety and health policies. If there is a work-related accident, a health and safety engineer would review the reports and may even conduct additional research (such as interviews) to reduce or eliminate the accident from happening again.

Free Teacher and Student Resources

The Board of Certified and Safety Professionals offers information on the various career paths that safety professionals take.

Industrial Safety Health Engineer Career Video Transcript

Even with workplace regulations to protect workers, many jobs carry an element of risk. Industrial safety and health engineers are responsible for using engineering tools and technology to make places that are dangerous to work at as safe as possible. These engineers promote worksite and product safety to avoid hazards from a variety of sources: chemical, physical, biological, and even psychological. They are always on the lookout for new ways to predict and prevent hazardous conditions and when they do occur, control them with safety measures.

Industrial safety and health engineers work with other public health and safety workers to coordinate efforts, often teaming up to investigate industrial accidents and injuries, find their cause, and prevent future problems. While they spend time in the office to plan new and improved safety programs, these engineers also travel to worksites to evaluate machinery and environments and to train workers in safety and emergency procedures. Many of these positions require a four-year college degree in engineering, along with work related experience. For these engineers, maintaining safer, healthier workplaces keeps American industry industrious.

Article Citations

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Health and Safety Engineers.

National Center for O*NET Development. 17-2111.00. O*NET OnLine.