Housekeeping Checklist

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Labor Occupational Health Program

Summary Statement

A checklist for housekeeping, detailing items such as hazard identification and removal, bulk material storage and hazardous material storage. Part of a collection. Click on the 'collection' button to access the other items.

These tailgate/toolbox talks were developed for use under California OSHA regulations. The complete set is available from the Labor Occupational Health Program at UC Berkeley. For ordering information, visit the website ( The American Conference of Government Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) has adapted these talks to apply to federal OSHA regulations. To contact ACGIH, visit its web site (

Date Prepared:_________________________ By:_______________________
Project Name/No.______________________ Location:__________________

  • Check the box if the statement is true.
  • Citations in brackets are from Title 8 of the California Administrative Code.


  • The company has a written Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) that meets all Cal/OSHA requirements. It includes identification of hazardous housekeeping problems on the site, regular inspections, accident investigation, and correction of hazardous conditions. [1509]
  • Debris is cleared from work surfaces, passages, and stairs. [1513(a)]
  • Ground within 6 feet of a building under construction is free of irregularities. [1513(b)]
  • Storage areas and walkways are reasonably free of dangerous depressions, obstructions, and debris. [1513(c)]
  • All walking and working surfaces are reasonably dry and free from grease or oil. [3273(a)]
  • Spills of oil, grease, and other liquids are removed at once, or covered with sand or other absorbent material until cleaned up. [3273(a)]
  • Sufficient waste or trash containers are provided, used and emptied when appropriate. [1513(f)]
  • Workers wear heavy gloves and heavy soled or safety shoes when handling scrap material. [1520 and 3385]
  • All walking and working surfaces are free of protruding nails. [1513(a)]
  • Nails or fasteners are removed when opening crates, cartons, kegs, or when stripping small forms.
  • Nails are bent down or removed before scrap material is discarded.
  • Scrap and debris are piled neatly.
  • Materials, waste, or tools are not thrown from buildings or structures to areas where workers may be located. [1513(g)]
  • Any object protruding at head height has been removed or flagged.
  • Protective caps are used on exposed rebar. [1712(a)]


  • All piled or stacked material is stable and cannot fall, slip, or collapse. [1549]
  • The face of a pile of bags (containing cement or other material) more than 5 feet high is tapered back, or the sacks are tied in horizontal layers to prevent them from falling or collapsing. [1549(b)]
  • Lumber piles are no more than 16’ high if handled manually or 20’ high if handled by equipment. Headpieces, crosspieces, or other means are used as needed to prevent slipping, tipping, or collapsing. [1549(c)]
  • Piles of bricks, tiles, masonry blocks, and similar materials are stabilized by the use of headers at least every sixth layer. [1549(a)]
  • Brick stacks are not over 7 feet high. Brick stacks over 4 feet high are tapered back. [1549(a)]
  • Masonry stacks over 6 feet high are tapered back. [1549(a)]
  • The way that material is going to be taken off the pile is planned at the time the material is first stored.
  • Workers and their equipment have room to move material off a pile.
  • Material is piled on surfaces that will hold its weight. [1549(f)]
  • Material is piled on ground stable enough for a heavy load (not too near an excavation).
  • Pipe or rod is stored in racks if more than one layer high.
  • Surplus materials are returned to the stockpile.


  • Flammable material is always stored in separate closed containers. [1513(e)]
  • Incompatible chemical products (which may cause a hazardous reaction if they come in contact) are not stored together. [1549(g) and 1931(b)]
  • Smoking is prohibited in flammable liquid storage areas. [5543(c)]
  • Flammable liquids are not stored near sources of ignition (sparks, electricity, flames, or hot objects). [1534(b) and 5543(c)]
  • Where more than 25 gallons of flammable liquids are present, they are kept in a storage cabinet approved by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). [1930(a)(4)]
  • Indoor storage areas for flammable liquids are ventilated and have one clear aisle, at least three feet wide. [1931(e) and (f)]
  • Flammable liquids stored outdoors are at least 50 feet from the property line and 10 feet from any public way. (Requirements change for very large quantities.)[1932(a)]
  • Outdoor flammable liquid storage areas are graded to divert spills away from buildings. [1932(b)]
  • Flammable and combustible scrap, debris, and waste are removed promptly from buildings or structures. [1513(d)]
  • Covered metal waste cans are available for oily and paint-soaked waste. [1513(e)]
  • Appropriate cleanup materials are available for leaks or spills of flammables or other hazardous materials. [1935(b)]
  • Leftover hazardous products and waste are properly stored, labeled, and disposed of according to the instructions on the product’s Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). [1510, 1930 and 5192]


  • Toilets and washing facilities are clean and sanitary. Toilets are designed to ensure user privacy, and are supplied with toilet paper. [1526 and 1527]
  • Sufficient toilets and washing facilities are available. [1526 and 1527]
  • Adequate supplies of potable water are available. [1524(a)(1)]
  • Drinking water is stored and dispensed in clearly marked containers that are not used for any other purpose. [1524(a)(3)]
  • Drinking water is dispensed from fountains, or single service cups are supplied. [1524(a)(2) and (4)]
  • All pipes and containers for non-potable water have been clearly labeled, and only potable water is used for washing, drinking, or cooking. [1524(b)]
  • Change rooms (if required) are clean without accumulated dirty clothes, food, or food containers.


  • Lighting and ventilation are adequate. [1523]
  • Burned out lights are reported and replaced.
  • Housekeeping occurs constantly on the job, not just once a week or at the end of the project. [1513(a)]
  • Everyone does housekeeping, not just laborers.
  • Workers pick up anything they see lying around that can trip a person or fall on them.
  • Extension cords, lines, welding leads, hoses, etc. are coiled up when not in use.
  • Tools are returned to the gang box or tool room.