The United States Department of Labor, OSHA, requires that employers provide employees with the skills and tools to identify, correct, or eliminate a hazard. Employees must have training in all aspects of their working career and is an ongoing requirement. Specialized training, general awareness, and operation training come to mind for employees. Sometimes this can be handled with the OSHA 10-hour or OSHA 30-hour trainings. Unfortunately, the 10- and 30-hour trainings are general awareness and are many times not detailed enough to be considered as operations level training. In these cases, employers must ensure that employees receive additional training on the topic to ensure they are fully aware of the requirements for safe work. Fall protection training for example is based on compliance with the regulations and not what a manufacturer may require. This leads to a need for additional training.
So how long is the training good for? The OSHA 10- and 30-hour training officially does not expire but many employers, projects, and groups will look at a 5- or 10-year window of expiration. The obvious reason is that codes, standards and processes all change and therefore the training needs updated. Employees need to consider the risk associated with their work and take the initiative to update, refresh or redo their training in order to be the safest that they can be. Some specific trainings like Aerial Work Platforms or Forklifts commonly have a 3-year expiration before retraining must take place. Some trainings, like Hearing Conservation, are annual requirements when employees are exposed above 85 decibels in General Industry and 90 decibels in Construction. OSHA does establish a general criteria for what trainings are required, however, it is just a guide as to general work.
The guide can be found at https://www.osha.gov/Publications/osha2254.pdf
At SSOE Group, we require the OSHA 10-hour for all technical employees and the OSHA 30-hour for all field and startup employees. Specialized training such as Arc Flash, PPE, Emergency Reporting, SDSs, are all examples of custom training that is needed depending upon a particular employees work. Check with your manager and your company to determine what training would suffice for your work scope. For Safety’s Sake, Do Something to better protect yourself from hazards!