Is Your Safety Training Up to Date?

In today’s fast moving workplace, nothing stays the same for long. That principle applies to safety hazards, too, which means that safety training has to constantly race to catch up. This Friday, our Safety Training Tips Editor offers aids to get… and keep you … up to speed.

There’s no shortage of places to look for up-to-date safety information thanks to the Internet. Start with the websites of OSHA, NIOSH, CDC, EPA, FMCSA, your state’s safety and health agency, or other government office or industry organization that focuses on safety areas of particular concern to your organization. Then follow the links from there. You can also look to suppliers of safety equipment, signage, and safety training materials, who often post safety alerts and provide other current information on their websites. When you’re surfing, look for updates on:

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–Interpretations of requirements (which often significantly change the regs, as first presented)
–Workplace hazards
–Occupational safety, health and industrial hygiene research (new studies and reports)

Find out about any recent changes in your facility.

Of course, it’s not only changes that occur outside your facility that affect safety inside your organization. You also have to keep up to date on changes within your organization. A wide range of changes can introduce new hazards and prompt the need for additional safety training. For example, consider the safety impact of:

–New equipment
–New materials
–New or different procedures
–New products or services
–Changes in PPE, engineering controls, and other protection
–An influx of new or temporary employees

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Review internal safety and health documents.

Some of the information you need to keep safety training up to date is right in your files. Any of the following readily available sources of safety-related information can help you assess the need to update training:

–Safety audits
–Accident reports
–Air quality monitoring results
–Employee injury and illness data
–Employee Assistance Plan figures (wellness and substance abuse issues, for example)
–Employee suggestions and concerns
–Safety and health improvement initiatives

Why It Matters…

–State and federal safety and health regulations change over time, as do interpretations of their requirements.
–As your organization grows and changes, safety hazards may change, new employees will enter your workforce, and new precautions and procedures will be required.
–You need to be right on top of all the potential changes so that you can keep your safety training programs on the cutting edge.


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