What Are OSHA's Training Requirements?

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At Hendershot Cowart P.C., we frequently work with employers to develop training programs that comply with general industry training requirements (1910 requirements), as well as construction training requirements (1926 requirements). Employers that fall within these industries can turn to us to ensure that they are meeting all OSHA training requirements appropriately.

General Industry Training Requirements Every Employer Should Know

OSHA uses the term “general industry” to refer to every industry that does not fall under construction, agriculture, or maritime. General industry regulations are addressed under OSHA Standard 1910 and as such often referred to as “1910 requirements”. These standards cover physical aspects of a workplace, such as walking surfaces and fire protection, as well as workplace activities, such as how to handle hazardous materials or work safely within confined spaces.

Many OSHA standards also include explicit training requirements to ensure that workers have the required skills and knowledge to safely do their work. In its Training Requirements in OSHA Standards publication, OSHA describes these training requirements “an essential part of every employer’s safety and health program for protecting workers from injuries and illnesses.”

Here are a few OSHA training requirements that apply to general industry worksites:

  • Employers must review OSHA safety programs with employees at the outset of the plan, when the employee's responsibilities change, and when the plan changes.
  • Employers must inform employees about the hazards of material they handle at work.
  • Employees who operate equipment such as working platforms must have the appropriate training.
  • Employers must train employees on the proper use of hearing protection and provide protection to all employees exposed to an eight-hour time-weighted average of 85 decibels or greater. The employer must pay for this equipment and offer annual trainings on subjects such as equipment use and hearing loss.
  • Employees must be trained in the safe operation of vehicles they utilize.
  • Employees should receive refresher trainings every three years to remain up to date with industry standards and best practices.
  • Employers should maintain documentation of training procedures and employee participation.
  • Employees exposed to hazardous materials, health hazards, or safety hazards must receive training for worksite emergency health resources, protective equipment use, and equipment operation.
  • In the absence of a hospital near the worksite, employers must train an individual on-site to administer emergency aid to employees.
  • Managers and supervisors responsible for training new employees must receive at least 40 hours of initial training themselves.
  • Employees must receive training on how to react in emergency situations, such as when exposed to hazardous materials.
  • Depending on the worksite, employers may need to utilize specialist employees such as first responders and hazardous materials professionals to ensure employees' safety.

How Are Construction Training Requirements Different from General Industry?

In addition to general industry standards, employers within the construction industry must also comply with industry-specific training requirements. These range from general safety and health education to occupation-specific training requirements. Here are just a few examples:

  • Contract employers must ensure that contract employees are trained in the work practices necessary to safely perform his or her job, and document that each contract employee has received and understood the training.
  • All employees working in or around open-surface tanks must be trained on the related hazards as well as the personal protection and first aid procedures that apply to those hazards.
  • Employers must institute a training program for employees subject to lead exposure, including initial training at the start of the job assignment and annual refresher training.
  • Employees involved in maintenance activities must be trained in the procedures applicable to maintaining the ongoing integrity of equipment and how to perform those procedures safely.
  • All employees involved with highly hazardous chemicals need to fully understand the hazards of the chemicals to themselves, their co-workers, and the surrounding community.
  • Only qualified and trained employees shall be assigned to install, adjust, and operate laser equipment, and must always carry proof of qualification.
  • An in-house team must be trained to investigate “near-miss” incidents that occur in their employer’s facilities.

Get Assistance With Training Compliance from Houston-based OSHA Attorneys

OSHA regulations are complicated and developing a training program that adequately meets OSHA expectations can be challenging. To arrange a consultation about OSHA training, call (713) 909-7323 or contact our Texas law firm online. In addition to our main offices in Houston, we are available by appointment only at our offices in Corpus Christi, Austin, Sugar Land, and the Galveston area.

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