Safety Manager (Officer)

The primary aim of safety managers or officers is to create a work environment that is safe for employees to work in. They are required to develop and maintain accident prevention programmes and are responsible for ensuring that occupational accidents do not occur in the work place. To achieve this, they need to keep careful records of accidents that do occur, investigate the causes of these accidents and implement measures to prevent such accidents from recurring.

Safety managers will perform a number of tasks, including ad hoc safety inspections, maintaining accident occurrence records (as required by law), testifying in hearings and in court, and training other safety officers.

They are predominantly employed in manufacturing or production plants, as it is within such environments that heavy-duty machinery - the major cause of industrial accidents - is used. The work environment is usually noisy. Most safety officers work from an office. Due to the diversity of industries in which they are employed, they may be required to work outdoors, for instance in the construction industry.

Safety engineers work to develop more efficient and safe manufacturing processes and safety measures - see Industrial Engineer for more details.

Occupational health and safety officers coordinate health and safety systems in an organisation, identify hazards and assess risks to health and safety, put appropriate safety controls in place, and provide advice on accident prevention and occupational health to management and employees.

Occupational / Industrial hygienists identify and investigate problems of occupational / industrial hygiene (chemical and biological hazards) in the workplace. They use scientific equipment to measure and control hazardous substances.


  • large construction companies

  • mines

  • saw-mills

  • food manufacturers

  • airlines

  • motor industries

Getting Started

  • call a mining house or a motor manufacturer and ask if you can shadow a safety manager officer for a day

  • arrange to speak to a safety manager about this type of career


Adonai College, Boland TVET College, Buffalo City TVET College, Capricorn TVET College, Catholic Institute of Kabgayi, Deborah Retief Memorial School of Nursing/Institute of Health Sciences/ Kanye Seventh Day Adventist College of Nursing, Eastcape Midlands TVET College, False Bay College, Gideon Roberts University, Kabale University, King Sabata TVET College, Letaba TVET College, Livingston International University of Tourism, Lusaka Apex Medical University, Majuba TVET College, Makerere University, Mnambithi TVET College, Motheo TVET College, National University of Science & Technology, Northern Cape Urban TVET College, Northlink College, Port Elizabeth TVET College, Rusangu University, South Cape TVET College, South West Gauteng TVET College, Thekwini TVET College, Tshwane North TVET College, Tshwane South TVET College, University for Development Studies, University of Cape Coast, Vaal University of Technology, Victoria University


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