How to Become a Safety Inspector in South Africa: Qualifications, Jobs and Salary

Safety Inspectors are responsible for checking that organizations operate according to the standard rules and regulations regarding workplace safety.
Additionally, they facilitate and support actions to eliminate or control hazards to minimize risks in a designated work area.

Almost every organization in South Africa welcomes a regular safety inspection visit.
Therefore, the job of a safety inspector is high-demand and well-paid.

A Safety Inspector requires a solid set of skills and qualifications that result from mandatory Safety Inspector courses and apprenticeships.
Proper learning and training provide future artisans with essential knowledge of ensuring that a workplace is safe and productive.

Safety Inspector jobs in South Africa pay a reliable salary.
This specialization comes with essential benefits and good prospects for qualified labourers.
Furthermore, they can apply for Safety Inspecting positions in various sectors, such as government departments or municipalities.

Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority

About the Accreditation, Courses & Seta


Seta Code: 653109 (engine)

                  653101 (motor)

NQF Levels: NQF 4    

SAQA Code:

97990    -  Occupational Certificate

What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Safety Inspector?

Safety Inspectors must have an excellent understanding of health and safety regulations. Their ability to identify a hazard risk and prevent work accidents is vital to the well-being of any organization.

To work as a Safety Inspector, one must have a Matric Grade 9 certificate confirming the completion of the studies period. Some employers may require higher certifications.
Registered operators in this field have to gain their skills and knowledge from short courses and training before they are eligible to earn an entry-level salary.

The job of a Safety Inspector in South Africa is part of the MerSETA (Manufacturing Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority) environment.

To be able to apply for this position, you must:

  • Be at least 16years old.
  • Manufacturing, Engineering, and Technology NQF Level 05.
  • Mathematical literacy at NQF Level 4.
  • Possess outstanding knowledge of safety codes, health regulations, and logistics.
  • Have a national certificate that shows you have completed Safety Inspector courses.

Besides these mandatory qualifications, a Safety Inspector must also prove the following traits:

  • Be physically fit to work in various organizational environments.
  • Be mentally strong to train and coordinate large groups of people.
  • Be able to work for long periods.
  • Enjoy doing accurate and precise work.
  • Possess a thorough knowledge of health risks and regulations.
  • Be able to complete health and safety reports.
  • Have a strong sense of practicality.
  • Be willing and able to travel to various workplaces and organizations.

According to the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), having a Safety Inspecting job also implies these requirements:

  • An in-depth understanding of health and safety compliance rules in the workplace.
  • Have above-average mathematical and computer abilities.
  • Have excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Be precise and reliable.
  • The ability to work well with others.
  • A great set of communication skills.
  • Be proficient in speech and writing.
  • Be analytically-orientated.
  • Be dogmatic, but with a high degree of empathy.

What is a Safety Inspector’s Job?

Expert Safety Inspectors have a broad range of mathematical, computing, and communication abilities, which they gain from study and hands-on experience.

Safety Inspectors use their knowledge and skills to estimate the dangers in a workplace and create safety protocols accordingly.
More so, they should be well-versed in the legal implications of injury and prevention tactics that help avoid injury or physical loss due to accidents.

Safety Inspecting comes with a few occupational hazards and dangers. Such professionals may have to travel to various organizations and face genuine logistics issues.
Therefore, they require a high level of personal awareness and common sense besides professional knowledge.

A Safety Inspector’s main duties include:

  • Inspecting a work environment to see if it is safe for people and company goods.
  • Analyzing the risks and other various hazard aspects in an organization.
  • Determine hazard risks in an organization.
  • Helping workplaces improve their safety and health conditions.
  • Inspecting departments and checking if the health and safety regulations are respected.
  • Maintaining accident occurrence records.
  • Testifying in hearings and in court in the case of a workplace accident that results in a lawsuit.
  • Training other safety inspectors.

After finishing Safety Inspector courses and four years as an apprentice, one can begin a career as a drafter in sectors like:

  • Government departments.
  • Municipalities
  • Construction sites
  • Large construction sites
  • Private firms

How Much Does a Safety Inspector Earn in a Year?

Proper Safety Inspecting skills and the obligatory Safety Inspector studies can help a professional earn an above-average salary in South Africa.

At the moment, the average hourly pay for Safety Inspectors is R121.84.
Depending on your level of abilities and experience, you can earn between R73 and R286 per hour. In addition, you may also receive a bonus ranging between R10, 000 and R98, 000 for an entire year.

As a student or apprentice, you may earn only the minimum rate at first. However, in time, you can earn an average of R402,000 per year. The most that you can make within 12 months of working as a Safety Inspector in South Africa is R799k, which is well above the average wage.

How to Work as a Safety Inspector in South Africa

South Africa has a broad market for Safety Inspector jobs.
There is substantial demand for such professionals in several industries and sectors, with more than 160 listings currently available.
Candidates that meet the mandatory qualifications and expert skills have several directories available to apply for this specialization.

Safety Inspector courses give you an in-depth understanding of what this vocation requires.
They help you acquire skills and experience that are impossible to obtain through other learning methods.
By having a certificate that proves you had training in the field, you have an immediate advantage over other candidates for the same job.

Working as a Safety Inspector in South Africa gives you the freedom to pick a field of work from numerous industries and job sites. Additionally, with enough experience and knowledge, you can start your Safety Inspecting business and practise the trade privately.

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