Oil and Gas Extraction Program

Trucking, sand fracking, oil derrick work and manual tank gauging. Images taken by NIOSH.

The Oil and Gas Extraction Program provides aims to control or eliminate occupational injuries, illnesses and fatalities among workers in the oil and gas extraction industry — a workforce critical to the energy infrastructure of the nation.

Featured Items

Spring Health and Safety Summit 2023: Psychosocial Stressors in the oilfield. Recordings are available for the free virtual summit highlighting state-of-the-art knowledge on workers’ exposures to psychosocial stressors and health effects in the oilfield.

NIOSH Science Blog Post: Oil and Gas Workers Count – A broad overview of recent trends in the ups and downs of employment among U.S. oil and gas extraction companies.

Research Articles: Two research articles focused on cardiovascular events and substance use were recently published using data from the NIOSH Fatalities in Oil and Gas (FOG) Database.

Video: You’ve Got This! Understanding Hazards, Risks, and Controls for Safer Fluid Transfers in Oil and Gas Extraction


The mission of the Oil and Gas Extraction Program is to conduct research, work with partners, and develop and communicate workplace solutions to improve worker safety and health in the oil and gas extraction industry. The program strives to fulfill its mission through high quality research, practical solutions, partnerships, and research to practice (r2p). Over the years, NIOSH and its partners have completed numerous research projects to address safety and health issues in the oil and gas extraction industry. Projects cut across a number of important issues including motor vehicle safety, falls, fatigue, and health hazards such as silica, hydrocarbon gases and vapors, and noise. Additional research includes topics important to safety and health in the oil and gas extraction industry including lone workers, remote worksites, working in the outdoors, and substance use/misuse.

Research Priorities

The Oil and Gas Extraction Program has selected research priorities on the basis of burden, need, and impact and collaborated with other NIOSH research programs to write the research goals in the NIOSH Strategic Plan for FYs 2019-2024. The priority areas are:

  • Preventing hearing loss from exposure at work to loud noise or chemicals that damage hearing
  • Reducing hazardous dermal exposures
  • Reducing respiratory diseases induced by respirable crystalline silica
  • Preventing injuries and fatalities due to motor vehicle crashes
  • Promoting safe and healthy work design and addressing work organization factors that contribute to fatigue and substance use/misuse

The Oil and Gas Extraction Program Performance One-pager offers a snapshot of NIOSH programs’ priorities, strategies used to make progress towards priorities, recent accomplishments, and upcoming work.

A Story of Impact: NIOSH and Partners Work to Prevent Worker Deaths from Exposures to Hydrocarbon Gases and Vapors at Oil and Gas Wellsites

To Learn More

Learn more about health and safety issues related to oil and gas extraction by visiting the NIOSH Directory of Oil and Gas Extraction Resources.

NIOSH Science Blog
The NIOSH Science Blog provides an opportunity to learn about various workplace safety and health topics and exchange ideas with leading researchers from NIOSH. Check out NIOSH Science Blogs about Oil and Gas Extraction.

NORA Council
The Oil and Gas Extraction Program helps lead the NORA Oil and Gas Extraction Council, which brings together individuals and organizations to share information, form partnerships, and promote adoption and dissemination of solutions that work. The council seeks to facilitate the most important research, understand the most effective intervention strategies, and learn how to implement those strategies to achieve sustained improvements in workplace practice. The complete National Occupational Research Agenda for Oil and Gas Extraction can be found on the council’s website.

Email NIOSHOilandGas@cdc.gov with questions.