What You Don’t Know CAN Hurt You
Posted by Lisa Lopes on
No fall protection equipment — regardless of how effective — can save an employee who is not properly trained in its use. Therefore, to maintain a safe and productive environment for workers at height, proper fall protection training is the first and most important step in your fall protection program.
Employees working at height must be thoroughly trained with the knowledge and skills to recognize fall hazards; to evaluate the risk posed by each hazard; and to control the hazard through preventive or protective measures. Each individual must understand these techniques and procedures, including any challenges unique to their company’s procedures, job sites, or tasks.
There are NO Shortcuts in Safety!
With the increasing pressure to get the job done faster, many rush training requirements to win that next contract, or “check the box”. Ultimately, companies are paying double or more of their initial training investment because of the re-training, contract-appropriate training required, or frequent fall protection incidents. It doesn’t pay to cut corners, and it’s important to be trained according the regulatory requirements – not watering it down, or shortening it because it’s easier. It’s time to be a champion of change. The liability, safety, and protection of your workers rely on it.
Who’s Instructing Your Safety Training?
Selecting the right partner to provide the right training is critical. Professional fall prevention and protection training providers must be able to teach essential safety theories as well as their application in a job site so that workers can apply what they’ve learned.
Flexibility in training facilities is key. Honeywell holds open enrollment classes in various locations throughout the U.S., including two state-of-the-art training centers (Franklin, PA and Pasadena, TX) which feature confined space, wind energy, tower and other industry-specific simulators. Honeywell also offers onsite training programs at the customer’s facility or worksite, or at one of the Honeywell training centers if required. All the proper equipment, including the required backup systems for training, is provided. For some classes, students are asked to bring their own equipment so that during training, they are learning and practicing with the actual products they will use on a daily basis when they return to their jobs. Each student’s equipment, however, is inspected at training prior to use. If it does not pass Honeywell standards, the student is not permitted to use it.
Flexibility in course content is also crucial. Subject matter expert instructors offer a variety of program options that allow companies to customize the training according to the needs of their employees and the applications and environments in which they will be working. For example, Honeywell offers various programs, including half-day, one-day, and two-day classes along with other customized options.
ANSI requires workers to return every two years for refresher training. In these classes, it’s entirely up to the employer to decide what content will be reviewed. The training provider must be able to offer expert guidance as well as customize the training to the students’ needs.
Trainers need to provide the expertise, leadership, and resources that will deliver the most value to trainees. Fall protection is both very technical and engineering-related. The biggest takeaway for many of those attending fall protection classes is the realization that there’s so much more to know about fall protection than they had first assumed.
Understanding Inspection and Maintenance of your PFPE
Beyond training in the skills and use of fall protection equipment, workers at height must also be trained in the proper care and maintenance of their equipment.
Did you know that personal fall protection equipment (PFPE) has specific storage requirements and users need to understand all of the requirements for properly storing and caring for their equipment?
To maintain proper service life and high performance, fall protection products – anchorage connectors, body wear and connecting devices – must be inspected regularly. OSHA requires that fall protection equipment be inspected each time it is used, calling it “Pre-Use.” This means before a worker dons a harness, it must be inspected to determine if anything on the harness is damaged or broken.
Honeywell provides fall protection equipment inspection services per OSHA’s pre-use inspection and ANSI’s semi-annual and annual recommendations. Through the Honeywell Safety Training division, you’ll gain access to qualified experts that can conduct the inspection on-site at your location or you can send your equipment to a Honeywell location for inspection.
Staying Ahead of the Game
Each year, there are announcements of new and exciting advances in fall protection. Innovations in technology, design, weight, materials and comfort are making life easier and safer on the job, and the equipment is offered in a variety of options, styles, and construction from many sources.
It’s critical that technical training instructors stay educated on fall protection PPE, technology advancements, practices, and regulations if they are to succeed in providing the theory and applications needed to keep workers working safely at height.
At Honeywell, our instructors are qualified, trained subject matter experts in the safety field – deeply educated on all regulatory compliances. We deliver behavior-based training that meets, and many times exceeds, all expectations. We work hard at going the extra mile so that you are educated, compliant and more importantly – safe.