A most important consideration of any safety program is training. OSHA defines and mandates minimum training requirements in OSHA Standards 1926.20 and 1926.21. For a start let’s look at:
Training. Standards in this part requiring training on hazards and related matters, such as standards requiring that employees receive training or that the employer train employees, provide training to employees, or institute or implement a training program, impose a separate compliance duty with respect to each employee covered by the requirement. The employer must train each affected employee in the manner required by the standard, and each failure to train an employee may be considered a separate violation.
First and foremost we must recognize training comes in many shapes and sizes but it absolutely, positively has to be taught on a regular and ongoing basis and, per OSHA, it must be presented in a language and educational level that coincides with the language and comprehension level of the workers.
For certain jobs and tasks, OSHA requires the worker to complete an OSHA certified safety or training class, pass the applicable test and carry their “OSHA Card” to certify they have the proper training to perform the specific task. The great news is that today there are numerous “On Line” courses where individuals can receive the certified training to fulfill these requirements. What we want to focus on in this article; however, is onsite training.
One highly effective and recognized method of training is to hold weekly onsite safety training and accident prevention awareness programs for your employees and subcontractors. The “ToolBox Talk” is accepted as a quick and convenient method to deliver on site Safety Training as required by OSHA.
We have developed a comprehensive library of ToolBox Talks and recordkeeping tools and will be posting them on our website on a continual basis. We encourage you to use these ToolBox Talks to promote jobsite safety and feel free to contact us if you need specific Talks not currently published.
One cannot overstress the importance of training including an accurate recordkeeping system to validate your training messages, efforts and attendance. Should you have a serious accident or OSHA inspection these training records just might be your “get out of jail free card.”
Some of you might scoff at my ideas or think these weekly meetings are silly, sissy and a waste of time. My answer to you naysayer is that your foolish disregard for life, limb and the law will ultimately catch up with you. Companies have been driven into bankruptcy and owners and managers have been imprisoned due to stupid and careless accidents that could have been easily avoided with proper Safety Training.
This is the fifth of a series of article published by Kent Leighton and The FlatRock Group to help companies understand the importance of Safety in their Construction Operations and how simple it is to create and deploy a successful OSHA Compliant Safety Program.
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