Come See Us at The MSHA TRAM Conference, October 13-15, 2015 in Beaver, West Virginia

mshaHey–we’ll be at the MSHA TRAM conference Tuesday, October 13 through Thursday, October 15.

We’ll even be giving a presentation to show you how online tools, including a learning management system (LMS) and e-learning courses can help you with your MSHA safety training requirements. You can catch that on Wednesday, October 14 at 2:30 pm. We’ll be co-presenting with our friends at Catamount Consulting.

Otherwise, swing by our desk and say “hi” or us any questions you may have. We’ll be at the desk most times when we’re not presenting.

Look forward to seeing you there.

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9 Times When eLearning Is Better Than Instructor-Led for Safety Training

When Online Training Is Better Than Instructor-Led Training Image

A lot of people think that instructor-led training is ALWAYS better than e-learning, also known as online training.

And, based on our experience, it seems that this opinion is held especially strongly among safety professionals.

But, the truth is, there are often scenarios where elearning is as effective (and at times possibly more so) than instructor-led training. In this post we’re gonna take this topic head on, and give some examples when elearning is the most appropriate training method to use.

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Safety Roles: Competent Persons and Approved Instructors

MSHA and OSHA Safety Roles ImageIf you’re new to safety, the different roles and titles can get a little confusing.

Actually, that’s true even if you’ve been kickin’ around in safety for a while.

Things get even more confusing if you’re trying to keep up with roles that are specially defined by regulators in certain circumstances. For example, OSHA and MSHA mean different things when they refer to “competent persons.”

And things can get still more confusing when one regulator uses two different terms for something that’s pretty similar. For example, MSHA refers to Part 46 trainers as “competent persons” but to Part 48 trainers as “MSHA-approved instructors.”

Confused yet?

If so, we’ll get you back on solid ground shortly, we promise. Read on to clarify what we just talked about.

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OSHA’s Top Ten Violations, 2015

osha-top-10-violations-2015Every year at the National Safety Council’s Safety Congress and Expo, OSHA releases its list of the ten most cited violations from the previous fiscal year.

That list for fiscal year 2015 was released in October of 2015.

Then, in December, OSHA updates that list with additional statistics, providing a more comprehensive, detailed look at the violations.

OSHA’s now released those additional statistics as well. And we’ve got all the information for you below.

Check out the list below. We’ve also included links to additional webpages related to each of the commonly violated standards–the additional pages include free training materials, fun word games, interactive glossaries, additional helpful information about the regulation and how to avoid violating it, free safety checklists, and more.

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MSHA Part 46 Training for Non-Mining Employees

MSHA-part46-non-min-employeesIf you’re an operator or a production-operator at a surface mine in the U.S., you know you’ve got to provide safety training for your miners. (If this is news to you, we’ll give you some relevant news and definitions about that in just a second.)

In addition, the production-operator and a contracting company share responsibility for making sure that contract employees working at a mine site get safety training as well. We’ve covered that all in our recent MSHA Part 46 Training Requirements for Contractors article.

But in addition to that, you’ve also got to provide safety training to your employees who are not miners. And that’s what we’re going to explain in this article.

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Save Money and Time With Online MSHA Part 46 Compliance Training Tools

online-mining-safety-training_graphicAre you involved in mine safety training, perhaps for Part 46 and/or Part 48 of MSHA’s safety training requirement?

If so, what does your mining safety training program look like today? How do you deliver your training? Is it effective? Do you have enough time to do it all?

And how do you keep on top of things like making sure all new employees complete their training in the first 90 days, or that all miners get their annual refresher training on time?

And while we’re at it, how do you create and store all your records of training, run reports on that training, and create the training plan and other documentation required by MSHA?

If  you’re like a lot of people, you struggle to do all this, or to do all this well. Or maybe you’re doing it all and doing it all well, but you recognize that you could still improve.

If that’s you, this article may be of interest to you. In it, we’re going to show you how some online training tools can help make your mining safety training program more effective while also reducing the amount of time you have to spend on clerical, organization, and recordkeeping tasks.

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What Is a Safety and Health Management Program?

what is a safety and health management program image

This is an older article and is based on materials OSHA created BEFORE they finalized their recent Safety and Health Management guidelines. This article still has a lot of useful information, and we encourage you to read it, but before you begin, know that you may also be interested in some of the following articles:

And with that said, we’ll let you get back to this older article…

OSHA recommends that every workplace set up a Safety and Health Management program. The fact that OSHA says it’s a good idea is a pretty persuasive reason to do it, we think.

But in addition, creating a safety and health management program also decreases incident rates, including injuries and illnesses. And that’s good.

And health and safety management programs also have a financial benefit, saving companies money. So win/win/win, right?

In this article, we’ll explain more fully some of the reasons for having a safety and health management program that we just introduced above. Then we’ll explain the features of a safety and health management system. And we’ll include information and helpful links to other resources that can help you create, implement, and maintain your safety and health management program.

By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll have enough information to get moving in a positive direction, or maybe add some additional tweaks to your existing health and safety management program.

Note: Much of the information in this article is drawn from OSHA’s Safety and Health Management Systems e-tool, which is a great resource and which itself includes a lot of links to other great safety and health resources. Check it out!
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What is Online Health and Safety Training, Really, and What Can it Do?

What Is Online Safety Training ImageAre you thinking about getting your health and safety training program online but maybe you’re not entirely sure what exactly online safety training includes?

If so, you’ve come to the right place, because in this article, we’re going to explain what an online health and safety training program is and what it can do.

You may find it’s bigger than you’re thinking right now. So with those beginnings, let’s get on topic, huh?

But before we get going, please know we’ve got a free recorded on-demand webinar called Evaluating Online Safety Training Solutions that you may be interested in, too.

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OSHA Basics: What Is an OSHA Competent Person?

OSHA Basics-Competent Person Image

If you’re new to safety, you may wonder what OSHA means by the phrase competent person.

Or even how one becomes an OSHA competent person.

In this article, we’re going to give you the straight skinny.

We’ll start by giving you the general definition of the phrase that OSHA provides in 1926.32(f). But that’s not the full story, because some standards make additional requirements about competent persons. And so we’ll provide some links to help you find those standards. And finally, we’ll give you some more links for related OSHA Fact Sheets, e-Tools, Quick Cards, and more.

This will give you any and all information you need about competent persons and the way OSHA refers to it in regulations.

This is another of our OSHA Basics series of articles in which we explain 101-level OSHA topics. For more articles like this one, see the list at the bottom.

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What Is an MSHA-Approved Instructor in MSHA Part 48?

In a recent post, we looked at the role of a “competent person” for the MSHA Part 46 training regulations.

That was so much fun, we thought we’d expand the net and turn our attention to a similar (but slightly different) role in the MSHA Part 48 training regulations: the MSHA-approved instructor.

It would be handy if the people who provide the mandatory MSHA compliance training for Part 46 had the same name for their role that the people who do it for Part 48 do. But, they don’t. And it would be nice if the rules for becoming a Part 46 trainer were the same as the rules for becoming a Part 48 trainer, but that’s not how it works. Sometimes life just isn’t as easy or fun as we wish it were. In related news, you can’t have your cake and eat it too, and you didn’t get a pony for your birthday.

But, given that unfortunate news, let’s turn our attention to Part 48, see what’s what, and make life that one little bit easier. At least for those of us in the mining safety world.

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What Does the MSHA Part 46 Competent Person Do?

MSHA Part 46 Competent Person

If you read through 30 CFR Part 46, the MSHA regulations related to safety training for most surface miners and other employees at those mines, you’ll see references to the MSHA Part 46 competent person role. But just what does that mean? What is a competent person according to MSHA and Part 46?

In this article, we’re going to look at those questions more closely and dig up the answers. Ha-ha! Mining pun intended!

In addition, we’re going to give you some resources that can help you prepare yourself or someone else to be a competent person for Part 46.

So let’s get started.

Along the way, we’re going to address some similar issues for Part 48, and we’ve written a similar similar article related to Part 48 and MSHA-approved instructors, so check that one out as well.

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12 Tools for a Safer Workplace

12 tips for a safer workplace imageWe all want a safer workplace, but we’re not always sure how to get there.

Fortunately, there are lots of good ideas and lots of places to find them. You can do worse than checking out OSHA, NIOSH, and MSHA, for example. There are professional safety organizations, such as the National Safety Council (NSC) and the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE). And there are plenty of good EHS journals, including EHS Today, Occupational Health & Safety, and Industrial Safety and Hygiene News.

In this article, we’re going to consolidate a few topics we’ve written about in earlier posts, presenting twelve solid tools you can use to make your workplace safer. (Note: This article began with 12 tools/tips, but we’ve been adding to it and we think we’re up to 14 now–enjoy the extra bonus tips and let us know your own, too).
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