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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
There are many websites where you can get your workers Competent Person Certificates for $89 or less and there is a website called SafetyHead where you can purchase a course for $299, teach your employees yourself and then print your employee's certificates.

I called Cal Osha (not federal) and the rep said that as far as he knows Osha does not require any type of certified instructors.


It also appears that you don't have to buy any type of course to teach your employees and the only thing you need is to know is Osha's requirements and teach them to your employees.

Is anyone familiar with training their own employees and printing their own certificates?
 

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A cert without the employer giving the employee the authority to re-mediate the unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous situation isn't competent.

what hazards do you encounter at the workplaces, sewer gases, confined spaces, excavations, trench boxes, scaffolding, compressed flammable gases, spark hazards, lead, fall protection,......?

I'm not competent on plumbing hazards, but my scaffolds don't fall over, ever...

the OSHA regs regarding this actually make sense.

No, if you have been paying attention the last ten years and the boss allows you to fix safety issues you're a competent person. most likely you have trained several other compete persons over the years.

I'd consider any 3rd year apprentice a competent person.... I'd EXPECT them to repair or replace or red tag any safety shortcoming. They've sat through 75+ hours of safety Meetings.:thumbsup:

Going forward I'll name and post on the job box bill board all employees I expect to act as "competent persons" and file copies with the 300 forms and bring it up at weekly safety meetings who is and isn't and why.

If you are a journeyman,/master, and or licensed mechanic in your trade I would think your experience would allow you to judge if others are Competent and vouch for them by issuing a "certificate of Competency" in your set of skills. The foreman/management would actually have to allow the person to exercise their "authority"/knowledge to satisfy OSHA regs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A cert without the employer giving the employee the authority to re-mediate the unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous situation isn't competent.

what hazards do you encounter at the workplaces, sewer gases, confined spaces, excavations, trench boxes, scaffolding, compressed flammable gases, spark hazards, lead, fall protection,......?

I'm not competent on plumbing hazards, but my scaffolds don't fall over, ever...

the OSHA regs regarding this actually make sense.

No, if you have been paying attention the last ten years and the boss allows you to fix safety issues you're a competent person. most likely you have trained several other compete persons over the years.

I'd consider any 3rd year apprentice a competent person.... I'd EXPECT them to repair or replace or red tag any safety shortcoming. They've sat through 75+ hours of safety Meetings.:thumbsup:

Going forward I'll name and post on the job box bill board all employees I expect to act as "competent persons" and file copies with the 300 forms and bring it up at weekly safety meetings who is and isn't and why.

If you are a journeyman,/master, and or licensed mechanic in your trade I would think your experience would allow you to judge if others are Competent and vouch for them by issuing a "certificate of Competency" in your set of skills. The foreman/management would actually have to allow the person to exercise their "authority"/knowledge to satisfy OSHA regs.
I think you missed the questions.

According to OSHA, every jobsite where workers are excavating 5 feet deeper or more there must be a person certified and designated as the Competent Person for that job site. The Competent Person must have something like 8 hours of classroom training and he must carry his certificate with him on the jobsite.

The Competent Person cannot leave the jobsite for any reason while workers are digging. If he leaves to go to the restroom offsite the company will be fined $12,500.

There are many schools where your employees can get Competent Person training for $295. After looking into the online classes I realized that it is (I think) possible for a company to do their own 8-hour training in-house and the companies can print their own certificates vs. paying the $295 per person.

My question is regarding whether or not contractors are aware that OSHA does not require certified instructors and they can do their own training.

Every contractor who excavates more than 4 feet should be aware of the Competent Person laws because I had a two-hour meeting with OSHA last week and they emphasized that they actually require LEGAL SHORING and a Competent Person certificate at 4 feet when employees are bending and kneeling in a trench and when soil is sandy, wet, or non-cohesive.
 

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I think you missed the questions.

According to OSHA, every jobsite where workers are excavating 5 feet deeper or more there must be a person certified and designated as the Competent Person for that job site. The Competent Person must have something like 8 hours of classroom training and he must carry his certificate with him on the jobsite.

The Competent Person cannot leave the jobsite for any reason while workers are digging. If he leaves to go to the restroom offsite the company will be fined $12,500.

There are many schools where your employees can get Competent Person training for $295. After looking into the online classes I realized that it is (I think) possible for a company to do their own 8-hour training in-house and the companies can print their own certificates vs. paying the $295 per person.

My question is regarding whether or not contractors are aware that OSHA does not require certified instructors and they can do their own training.

Every contractor who excavates more than 4 feet should be aware of the Competent Person laws because I had a two-hour meeting with OSHA last week and they emphasized that they actually require LEGAL SHORING and a Competent Person certificate at 4 feet when employees are bending and kneeling in a trench and when soil is sandy, wet, or non-cohesive.
So someone gets hurt and sues you. You say I certified my employee competent there was no breach of osha regs. I myself would feel much more comfortable having my employee taught by an unbiased third party. Seems more defensible.
 

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How could a "unbiased" 3rd party know what types of hazards your employees face? Creating or purchasing a "Circle of Blame" Doesn't relieve the employer and the supervisors of the responsibility to train your workers to recognize unnecessary risks and to allow them to take action.

While I don't make my living digging trenches, If I did, I'd educate every employee and supervisor to a level of competency and publish(certify their areas of competency) their areas of skill to meet the letter and intent of the OSHA regulations (Laws are voted on by Congress and signed by the President) Work having to stop because you left the site is silly.

Are your workers sent home when you are sick?

If you are a poor teacher, or employ a large percentage of untrained, illiterate, or illegal alien workers, subbing out the tasks of safety training might pay.

Often contractor associations offer trade specific OSHA training as a Perk.
 
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I just spoke to a local utility contractor in the area a week or so ago and he said you can pay someone to come to you for one day, teach the course and certify everyone there for $800-1000 I think. Not sure what company though, sounds like a no brainier to me rather than trying to do it yourself or take it online.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I just spoke to a local utility contractor in the area a week or so ago and he said you can pay someone to come to you for one day, teach the course and certify everyone there for $800-1000 I think. Not sure what company though, sounds like a no brainier to me rather than trying to do it yourself or take it online.
I paid $295 to get my Competent Person certificate about a year ago. The teacher knew absolutely nothing about trenching and he only read from the manual that the school had created. There was 15 students in the class and they raked in about $4500 for reading a few lines from a book. "I'm in the wrong business!"

The problems I have with paying a teacher is the inconvenience and the time. I feel I can do a better job teaching my employees about safety and I can read to them and save several thousand dollars. Most important, I don't have to lock in a date for training and spend an entire day where I am forced to give up jobs that could make me a lot of money. I can break the training into several short sessions that are not as painful as being forced to spend an entire day in a classroom. While I love to go to classes to learn I hate the time I lose by being in a classroom for more than a few hours.
 

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I paid $295 to get my Competent Person certificate about a year ago. The teacher knew absolutely nothing about trenching and he only read from the manual that the school had created. There was 15 students in the class and they raked in about $4500 for reading a few lines from a book. "I'm in the wrong business!"

The problems I have with paying a teacher is the inconvenience and the time. I feel I can do a better job teaching my employees about safety and I can read to them and save several thousand dollars. Most important, I don't have to lock in a date for training and spend an entire day where I am forced to give up jobs that could make me a lot of money. I can break the training into several short sessions that are not as painful as being forced to spend an entire day in a classroom. While I love to go to classes to learn I hate the time I lose by being in a classroom for more than a few hours.
10-4, I'm with you on the production loss. We try to do any of our training in the slower winter months. Sometimes you need to bite the bullet and get it done, if you take a few short days are you going to get as much done as you would if you just scheduled a off day from the field? Sometimes knowing you only have 1/2 days you wouldn't get as much done as when you are planning a full one. "We only have 4-5 hours so just get this done and wrap it up?"
 
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