March 11, 2022
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed a wide range of OSHA training topics and safety regulations that businesses across different industries must comply with. Whether you’re in charge of supervising office staff or construction workers, these topics can help both you and your employees learn more about workplace hazards and workplace safety practices.
Organizing OSHA training programs can go a long way in protecting your workers from problems that could place themselves or others at risk. As their minds will be at ease knowing they’re safe and protected from the majority of common threats surrounding them, it can also help them be more productive each day. But with so many OSHA safety topics to choose from, which ones should be included in your training program?
Here, we’re created a list of the most vital OSHA safety topics that can help meet your training requirements. While they won’t cover every aspect of OSHA’s safety framework, addressing these topics is a great starting point when preparing your OSHA training program.
Across many industries, it’s important for employees to watch out for fire hazards like ignition hazards, electrical overloading, flammable liquids, and other combustible materials. Without fire safety awareness and proper training, small fire hazards and unsafe practices can quickly grow into major fire outbreaks with devastating outcomes, such as the destruction of property or worse, loss of life.
One of the key strategies to maintaining a fire-safe workplace is to provide all employees with comprehensive fire safety training and refresher. As an employer, you’re required by law to keep both new and existing staff up to date with the latest OSHA fire safety regulations. This includes teaching them about the different types of fire hazards, risk assessment training methods, as well as fire emergency response techniques. By the end of this OSHA training topic, your workers should know how to conduct a worksite risk assessment, set up a fire alarm system, use a fire extinguisher or fire hose, and perform basic first aid for suffocation and burn injuries. It’s also your responsibility to prepare a detailed safety management evacuation plan that your employees can follow in case of a fire emergency.
Recommended fire safety training courses:
Thousands of workers are injured or killed annually due to a lack of basic electrical safety programs. Some of the most common electrical injuries include cardiac arrest, muscle and nerve failure, thermal burns, blindness, and loss of hearing. Even experienced electricians, electrical engineers, mechanics, and office employees need to steer clear of complacency and ensure that enough time is taken to prevent such injuries and fatality cases.
Making sure that you’ve properly installed and tested electrical systems is critical to ensuring your employees’ safety. Regular electrical safety training can also help them become more aware of the risks and safety protocols involved in ensuring a safe work environment. You can highlight topics like electrical isolation and immobilization, electrical safety protection, fault finding, electrical maintenance, live working, and arc flash. OSHA has also set up specific standards for companies to follow and non-compliance can result in penalties and fines.
Recommended electrical training courses:
The use of personal protective equipment (PPE) is a vital OSHA training topic for workers in construction, manufacturing, and healthcare industries who frequently deal with dangerous equipment, chemicals, and biohazards. This specialized equipment helps protect your employees from injuries or illnesses, such as chemical burns, electric shock, mechanical hazards, radiation exposure, and viral infections.
Through proper integration of OSHA training topics and comprehensive PPE training, they can learn about the importance of PPEs, how to choose the right PPE, as well as their correct usage, maintenance, storage, and disposal. Workers can also gain more insights into the different types of PPEs, which include eye and face protection, hand protection, body protection, feet protection, and respiratory protection. If there are any changes in the PPEs being used in your workplace, retraining must also be provided to employees.
Recommended PPE courses:
According to OSHA, there are over 100,000 injuries and deaths related to falls. These staggering numbers have caused companies to lose millions every year from violation penalties, liability claims, and increasing employee compensations and hazard insurance prices. With falls being one of the most common causes of injuries and deaths, it has become even more crucial for companies to provide their workers with extensive fall protection training.
Whether you manage a team of construction workers, crane operators, or building maintenance staff, these types of OSHA training topics will help your team eliminate hazards and control the risks and safety issues associated with working from heights. They’ll also get to learn more about the nature of fall hazards and the standard procedures for installing, inspecting, maintaining, and disassembling fall protection systems.
Recommended fall protection training courses:
From miners and oilfield workers to construction industry workers and maintenance staff, there are many jobs that require physical labor in confined spaces. But due to non-compliance to regulations and a lack of preparedness for hazards like toxic gas, low oxygen levels, excessive heat, and sudden floods, the number of workers that are injured each year remains large. As an employer, it’s critical that you provide your employees with a comprehensive confined spaces guide before they work on-site to ensure that they can carry out their tasks safely. This OSHA training topic can also help your workers boost their knowledge and skills and effectively control the job safety risks associated with working in confined spaces.
Recommended confined space courses:
Moving components, sharp corners, and hot surfaces from machines like drills, lathes, boilers, steamers, and hydraulic presses have the potential to cause both minor and severe injuries. These can range from light abrasions and first-degree burns to more serious and permanent injuries like blindness, lacerations, puncture wounds, and even amputations. Whether you’re managing a crew of industrial machine operators, construction workers, or maintenance technicians, you must comply with OSHA regulations on machine safety and provide your workers with the necessary machine guarding training.
OSHA training topics like machine guarding allow your employees to learn how to safely operate machines by securing their machinery with different safeguarding methods such as physical barriers, safety devices, and indicator signs. They’ll also be able to delve into more specialized topics including hazardous mechanical actions, feeding and ejection methods, and OSHA requirement minimums for machine guarding.
Recommended machine guarding training courses:
Broken machines, stored energy, leaked chemicals, or toxic gas can cause potential health problems and severe physical hazards for employees. As an employer, it’s your responsibility to comply with your city or state’s safety regulations and provide your workers with comprehensive lockout tag out training to ensure that they can work safely and control potential hazards. Through this OSHA training topic, your workers can learn how to label and tag equipment, isolate hazardous energy or substances, shut down machines, and dissipate stored energy. You can also guide them through specialized topics like device removal, group lockout, shift changes, energy control devices, and tag out allowances.
Recommended lockout tag out training courses:
Regardless of the industry, all organizations need to be able to respond to workplace emergencies in a quick and efficient manner to mitigate risks of injury or death. Organizations must always be prepared to evacuate immediately from emergency situations such as fires, toxic gas or chemical spills, or even security threats like bombs and terrorist attacks. To achieve this, they must prepare employees by including this OSHA training topic in their onboarding and compliance training. They must also have a clear evacuation plan in place and provide their employees with the necessary emergency evacuation training. Proper preparation and training will allow employees to respond quickly and more confidently to emergency situations, assess their environment, evacuate without panicking, and ensure that everyone is accounted for. Some examples of emergency evacuation and response include fire safety evacuation and hospital safety training programs.
Recommended emergency evacuation training courses:
Workers in manufacturing, healthcare, retail, and even corporate sectors usually face physical discomfort from repetitive tasks, awkward postures, or overexertion. These can result from a lack of ergonomic planning, and if not mitigated, simple aches and pains can become long-term musculoskeletal disorders or permanent injuries. As an employer, it’s your responsibility to give your workers comprehensive ergonomics training, carry out risk management processes in the workplace, and comply with your state’s ergonomics regulations and guidelines. Through OSHA training topics like Ergonomics, your workers will have a better awareness of common ergonomic health risks and a deeper understanding of topics like lifting techniques, body positioning, engineering controls, administrative controls, and even the use of personal protective equipment.
Recommended ergonomics training courses:
From industrial plants and mining sites to oil rigs and shipping vessels, there are many workers responsible for handling different types of hazardous materials. If not handled according to OSHA safety regulations, they can compromise the health and safety of people, flora, and fauna in the vicinity. More specifically, non-compliance can cause fire hazards, chemical spills, corrosion, and even health-related injuries like suffocation, poisoning, and infection. Different health hazards are also covered from exposure to asbestos to hazardous liquids and gasses. With such high risks involved, companies are mandated by law to provide their employees with proper HazMat training and access to chemical safety training courses. This OSHA training topic allows workers to learn how to effectively handle, transport, store, and dispose of different types of hazardous materials. This OSHA training topic also gives them more insight into the effects of hazardous materials as well as step-by-step procedures for cleaning up toxic spills.
Recommended hazardous material training courses:
Hannah is an eLearning writer who dedicates her time to creating in-depth content about EdApp, a multi-award-winning mobile LMS that has pioneered one of the most progressive microlearning solutions on the market. She brings years of writing experience in the online software industry to her current role in the eLearning sphere. When she's not writing, you can find her catching up on new anime series or re-reading her favorite novels.