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ISO 45001:2018 has replaced OHSAS 18001.Click here for the new 45001 website.

History of OHSAS 18001?

OHSAS 18001 (or Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series 18001) is a management system designed to help institutions control occupational health and safety threats for better performance.

  1. Timeline
  2. Who Developed OHSAS 18000 Standards?
  3. What was OHSAS 18001 based upon?
  4. Who recognizes OHSAS 18001?
  5. Elements of OHSAS 18001
  6. Highlights of a good OHSMS
  7. Importance of OHSAS 18001
  8. Integration of OHSAS 18001 with ISO 9001 and/or ISO 14001


  • OHSAS 18001:1999-2007 Changes PPT1996 – BSI introduced the first OHSAS standard in 1999 – BSI 8800 provided guidelines for the current version.
  • 1999 – OHSAS 18001:1999 The specification outlines the prerequisites for any occupational health and safety management system, which aids an institution to control risks to enhance performance.
  • 2007 – Updated to better align with ISO 14001, Health is a focus

Who developed it?

It was developed with the guidance of several national standard bureaus and certification bodies:

  • British Standards Institution
  • Bureau Veritas Quality International
  • Det Norske Veritas
  • International Certification Services
  • International Safety Management Organization
  • Lloyds Register Quality Assurance
  • National Quality Assurance
  • National Standards Authority of Ireland
  • SFS Certification
  • SGS Yarsley International Certification Services
  • South African Bureau of Standards
  • Standards and Industry Research Institute of
  • Standards Australia

What was it based upon?

Many documents were contributors (predecessors?) to OHSAS 18001:

  • BS8800:1996 Guide to occupational health and safety management systems
  • DNV Standard for Certification of Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems(OHSMS):1997
  • Technical Report NPR 5001:1997 Guide to an occupational health and safety management system
  • Draft LRQA SMS 8800 Health & safety management systems assessment criteria
  • SGS & ISMOL ISA 2000:1997 Requirements for Safety and Health Management Systems
  • BVQI Safety Certification : Occupational Safety and Health Management Standard
  • Draft AS/NZ 4801 Occupational health and safety management systems Specification with guidance for use
  • Draft BSI PAS 088 Occupational health and safety management systems
  • UNE 81900 series of pre-standards on the Prevention of occupational risks
  • Draft NSAI SR 320 Recommendation for an Occupational Health and Safety (OH and S) Management System

When an organization conforms to OHSAS 18001, it ensures that all people directly or indirectly involved with the company are exposed to a minimum number of risks. A third party certification ensures that effective steps have been put in place to avoid accidents and unsafe situations.

Who recognizes it?

It is a challenge to create an effective (and flexible enough to become universally accepted) tool that covers employees interests efficiently. Although the International Standards Organization (ISO) does not consider OHSAS 18001 an official ISO standard, it is recognized across the globe by several industries, which insist on this certification.

Many employees are being exposed to a number of harmful by-products of modern day industrialization. Hence, health and safety management is on the forefront of all policy-making tools to safeguard workers well-being and security.

Elements of OHSAS 18001

OHSAS 18001 standard has a number of requirements that include the following:

  • OH&S policy
  • Planning for Hazard Identification
  • Implementation & Operation
  • Checking and Corrective Actions
  • Risk Assessment & Risk Control
  • Legal & Other Requirements
  • Continual Improvement
  • Objectives
  • OH&S Management Programs
  • Training
  • Management Review

For more details please see Requirements of OHSAS 18001

Highlights of a good OHSMS (what is an OHSMS?)

  • Identification of risks in work place
  • Methods to control these risks
  • Implementation of methods

Importance of OHSAS 18001

  • Less number of accidents
  • Reduced downtime
  • Less revenue loss due to disrupted production

Integration of OHSAS 18001 with other standards

OHSAS 18001 shares a number of elements with ISO 9001 and ISO 14001. An effective integration of them can simplify management of the systems.

ISO 9001-ISO 14001-OHSAS 18001 as a combined management system.

We offer six versions of the Documentation Package to simplify the process for organizations that already have other management systems (ISO 9001, ISO 14001, etc.) in place or want to deal with more than one standard at a time.

Learn more about which version is best for you.