The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets and enforces standards to elevate workplace safety. These standards help protect employees from injuries and illnesses.
Employee training on these safety standards must be done at least upon hiring and every year after. Some safety issues require more frequent training. Certain states require additional training as well.
Discover how frequently you should provide safety training to your agricultural employees.
Train as Frequently as Needed
OSHA does not set a frequency for safety training. Instead, the organization emphasizes the need to train as often as needed to consistently show that employees can safely complete a specific task.
The frequency of safety training depends on the complexity of a safety procedure. As a result, you should train more frequently if employee behavior or changing circumstances show a need.
For instance, you should conduct safety training when employees show inadequate safety knowledge. Other situations involve a significant change in the job site, hazards, or workers.
Employees who show safe practices do not need excessive safety training. Otherwise, they can become frustrated and disengaged.
Follow OSHA Training Standards for Agriculture
OSHA requires initial training for new hires and retraining every 365 days for specific agricultural tasks. These tasks include rollover protective structures (ROPS) for tractors used in operations, farm equipment guarding, and cadmium.
Other agricultural tasks, such as those involving grain elevators, food manufacturing, and lockout-tagout, are covered under OSHA’s General Industry Regulations. Many state programs require training for heat illness prevention as well. Stay current on local regulations to maintain compliance with the ones that apply to your location and type of business.
Document Safety Training
Comply with OSHA’s standards for documenting safety training. This includes having competent instructors deliver the training in a way employees understand. It also involves storing records of training attendance and coursework for the specified length of time.
Safety training must be provided in the language, vocabulary, and format most appropriate for the employee. For instance, a Spanish-speaking employee may require a safety professional who is fluent in the language and can provide bilingual training. This helps employees understand and apply the training.
You may document safety training in physical or digital form or both. These records must be available to an OSHA inspector upon request.
An effective documentation system includes the following:
- A process to record the employee’s name, trainer’s signature, training materials, or a description of the covered topics, and the date of the training session.
- Proof of competency and the date. This may include the results of an evaluation or demonstration of ability.
- A method to verify the records were created and stored.
- A policy for when and how to destroy records that no longer are needed.
- Record backups.
Need Help Delivering Safety Training?
Morris Bixby Group has qualified professionals who can deliver safety training to your agricultural team. Find out more today.