Organisational research investigating climate perceptions often use constructs reflecting dispersion and disagreement, termed ‘climate strength’, to investigate situational pressures on behaviour expression. Within safety-specific contexts, research has tended to emphasise the prediction of climate strength rather than an examination of its effects on behaviour. The present paper investigates the important first pathway in the prediction of safety behaviour by investigating the influence of safety climate strength on the relationship between safety climate perceptions and individual safety motivation in a safety critical context using multilevel analyses. Contrary to expectations, results initially indicated that safety climate strength negatively influenced the relationship between safety climate perceptions and safety motivation, such that greater variability was associated with greater motivation. Post hoc analysis re-grouping responses into broader functional levels found support for an interaction, suggesting a difference in the scope of influence for safety climate strength between the two levels of analysis. These findings are discussed in light of self-determination theory, and suggestions for future research and practice made.