Overview: Safety training is a critically important component of workplace safety and health. There are several different types of required safety training, such as forklift operation, hazard communication and HAZWOPER. Under many of these requirements, an employee is not even allowed to perform the job functions without the appropriate training. However, there is a lot of non-required training that an employer should conduct as well.
If a job is highly dangerous, there is a good chance that there will be an actual training requirement included in regulations regarding the job. Every job, though, should have some type of safety training. Even office work, which may seem immune to safety concerns, can benefit from basic safety training. For example, teaching employees how to store and position extension cords so as not to cause trips can prevent injuries and save employers a lot of money over time.
When safety training is conducted, it should be documented. This is especially true for required training. If OSHA inspects the workplace, it will want proof that all required training has been adequately performed, and it will not take the employer's word for it.
Trends: Technology helps businesses in a lot of ways, but it also creates liabilities. Many job functions today can be performed through robotic machinery. If an employer uses this type of machine, however, it should make sure safety training incorporates what to do if the machine malfunctions. There have been deaths caused by runaway robotic forklifts that safety training might have been able to prevent.
Author: Ashley Shaw, JD, Legal Editor
Florida employers seeking to provide notice that weapons will not be permitted inside the workplace and show their compliance with the Florida law that gives employees the right to keep a lawfully possessed firearm inside a locked personal vehicle in a company parking lot should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.
Texas employers seeking to prohibit weapons in the workplace, prevent workplace violence, provide notice that concealed weapons will not be permitted in the workplace and show their compliance with Texas law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.
Employers with employees who drive for work-related purposes, use a company-issued electronic device while driving or who are likely to use a personal device for work-related reasons while driving should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.
Employers seeking to notify workers that workers' compensation insurance is available and instruct them to promptly report any work-related injury or illness should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.
In-depth review of the spectrum of California employment law requirements HR must follow with respect to training and development.
A California court ruled that employers may be held liable for injuries to third parties and property damage during an employee's commute, so long as the employee was required to use his or her car for work and that the incident occurred during a regular commute or personal errand. This expands employer liability and reduces the effectiveness of the "coming and going" exception to employer liability.
Workers' compensation provides benefits to employees who are unable to work due to an injury or disease that arises out of and in the course of employment. This section explains how workers' compensation generally works and how employers can reduce workers' compensation claims and costs.
An employer may use this checklist to ensure their safety training program is adequate. While safety training necessities will be different for every employer, there are some steps that all employers should consider.
In-depth review of the spectrum of Texas employment law requirements HR must follow with respect to training and development.
HR guidance on the benefits of employee safety training.