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Heavy Machinery Operator Safety Training

Heavy machinery is used in a variety of areas and for many different reasons. From construction sites to the transportation of large industrial products, operators of heavy machinery are responsible for controlling a device that has great potential to harm themselves and people around them. Below, you’ll find a list of training topics that are required for most Heavy Machinery Operators.

OSHA Required Training

Fall Protection OSHA Regulation: 1926.503(a)

When OSHA Requires Fall Protection Training:

Required for each employee that may be exposed to fall hazards. See full OSHA regulation for more details.

Training Frequency

When there is a change in the workplace or the employer has reason to believe that a trained employee does not have the understanding and skill necessary to perform the job safely.

Downloadable Fall Protection Training Resources (free):

  • Fall Protection Powerpoint

  • Fall Protection Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Fall Protection Training Videos (paid):

  • Fall Protection by Atlantic Training

  • Fall Protection: Prevent Falling with PPE by Atlantic Training

  • Fall Protection The Right Connection by Coastal Training

First Aid OSHA Regulation: 1910.266 App B

When OSHA Requires First Aid Training:

In the absence of a nearby hospital or clinic (more than 4 minutes away), a designated employee should be trained to render first aid. See full OSHA regulation for more details.

Training Frequency

Retraining for life threatening emergencies should occur annually. Retraining for non-life-threatening response should occur 'periodically'.

Downloadable First Aid Training Resources (free):

  • Basic First Aid Powerpoint

  • First Aid Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

First Aid Training Videos (paid):

  • First Aid by Atlantic Training

  • First Aid in Construction Environments by Atlantic Training

  • First Aid: React & Respond AHA by Summit Training

Forklifts OSHA Regulation: 1910.178(l)

When OSHA Requires Forklift Training:

When an employee is required to use a powered industrial truck as part of their job duties. See full OSHA regulation for more details.

Training Frequency

Re-evaluation every three years; re-training if new equipment is introduced, an accident occurs, or if the operator is operating the equipment in an unsafe manner.

Downloadable Forklift Training Resources (free):

  • Forklift Safety Powerpoint

  • Forklift Safety Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Forklift Training Videos (paid):

  • Forklift Safety by Atlantic Training

  • Forklift Certification Safety by Atlantic Training

  • Forklifts and Pedestrian Safety by Atlantic Training

Manlifts OSHA Regulation: 1910.66(i)(1)

When OSHA Requires Manlift Training:

When an employee is required to operate a working platform as part of their job. See full OSHA regulation for more details.

Training Frequency

None specified.

Downloadable Manlift Training Resources (free):

  • Manlift Operator Powerpoint

  • Working Platform Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Aerial Lift Safety Training Videos (paid):

  • Aerial Lifts in Industrial and Construction Environments by Atlantic Training

  • Aerial Lift Safety by Summit Training Source

  • Aerial Lift Safety by Atlantic Training

Hearing Protection OSHA Regulation: 1910.95(k)

When OSHA Requires Hearing Protection Training:

Employees that are exposed to noise at or above an 8-hour time weighted average of 85 decibels. See full OSHA regulation for more details.

Training Frequency

Annually.

Downloadable Hearing Protection Training Resources (free):

  • Hearing Protection Powerpoint

  • Hearing Protection Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Hearing Protection Training Videos (paid):

  • Hearing Conservation Safety by Atlantic Training

  • Hearing Conservation (PPE) by Atlantic Training

  • Ultimate Hearing Conservation by Atlantic Training

Personal Protective and Respiratory Equipment OSHA Regulation: 1910.132(f)

When OSHA Requires Personal Protective and Respiratory Equipment Training:

When an employee is required to wear PPE, they must be trained on its usage. See full OSHA regulation for more details.

Training Frequency

Retraining required when the type of PPE changes, employee demonstrates inability to use PPE properly, or when the workplace changes in a way that renders previous training obsolete.

Downloadable Personal Protective and Respiratory Equipment Training Resources (free):

  • Personal Protective Equipment Powerpoint

  • Personal Protective Equipment Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Personal Protective and Respiratory Equipment Training Videos (paid):

  • ppe

    Personal Protective Equipment by Atlantic Training

  • ppe construction

    Personal Protective Equipment in Construction by Atlantic Training

  • Personal Protective Equipment Refresher by Atlantic Training

Industry Best-Practice Training (Not required by OSHA)

Cranes, Chains, Slings, Hoists, and Rigging

Training Frequency

Annually

Downloadable Cranes, Chains, Slings, Hoists, and Rigging Training Resources (free):

  • Crane Operations Powerpoint

  • Cranes & Hoists Signals Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Cranes, Chains, Slings, Hoists, and Rigging Training Videos (paid):

  • Rigging Safety In Construction Environments by Atlantic Training

  • Cranes, Chains, Slings & Hoists by Atlantic Training

  • Crane Safety in Construction Environments by Atlantic Training

Trench and Shoring Safety

Training Frequency

Annually

Downloadable Trench and Shoring Safety Training Resources (free):

  • Trench and Shoring Safety Powerpoint

  • Trench Safety Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Trench and Shoring Safety Training Videos (paid):

  • Trenching & Shoring Safety Basics by Atlantic Training

  • The Competent Person and Soil Classification by Atlantic Training

  • Trenching & Shoring Safety by JJ Keller

Hand Safety

Training Frequency

Annually

Downloadable Hand Safety Training Resources (free):

  • Hand Safety Powerpoint

  • Hand Safety Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Hand Safety Training Videos (paid):

  • Hand, Wrist, and Finger Safety by Atlantic Training

  • Hand, Wrist and Finger Safety in Construction Environments by Atlantic Training

  • Hand Safety by Summit Training

Materials Handling

Training Frequency

Annually

Downloadable Materials Handling Training Resources (free):

  • The Back and Material Handling Powerpoint

  • Manual Materials Handling Poster

  • Printable Wallet-Sized Compliance

  • Handout

Materials Handling Training Videos (paid):

  • Materials Handling Safety by Atlantic Training

  • Manual Material Handling Safety by Summit Training

  • Material Handling Equipment Safety by JJ Keller

Injury Risk

  • Very Low
  • Low
  • Moderate
  • HIGH
  • VERY HIGH

1.8% (rough approximation based on heavy and civil engineering construction industry) 1.8% Annual Injury Rate

Heavy Machinery Operator Safety Tips

Quick Tip

Many excavation projects require the use of machines that are complex to operate and require special certifications or licenses. You should never use these machines without the proper training, certificate, or license in order to cut down on the risk of accident and improper use.

Heavy machinery is used in a variety of areas and for many different reasons. From construction sites to the transportation of large industrial products, operators of heavy machinery are responsible for controlling a device that has great potential to harm themselves and people around them. Transporting massive amounts of heavy material across a wide area means lots of possibilities for small to serious injuries. As the operator of heavy machinery, you need to take your duties seriously. One moment of carelessness could lead to sever consequences. Below are some basic safety tips to help you no matter where the machinery is—in factories or construction sites, these tips will keep safety in the front of your mind and help you to pay special attention while performing your job as best as possible.

Before Operating the Equipment:

  • Make sure it has been inspected and received regular maintenance.
  • Always communicate with those around you. Everyone should be clear before moving or backing up the machinery.
  • Never leave a machine on an incline without stopping the engine and engaging the parking break.
  • Never allow people to ride or play on the equipment.
  • When operating equipment on an active road, display flashing lights and a slow vehicle triangle.
  • Be well rested and alert before starting the equipment. Get a good night’s sleep before each shift.
  • Never operate heavy machinery if you have started a new medication or feel drowsy.
  • Test all warning signals to make sure they are functioning correctly.
  • Make sure that the area where you intend to use the equipment is clear of anything that might get in your way or cause a problem with the machine.

While operating the Equipment:

  • Avoid distractions. No smoking, unnecessary talking, or texting. Focus on the job at hand.
  • If something seems wrong with the equipment, stop, put the break on, and investigate before continuing.

Wear the proper gear

  • Never wear loose clothing or anything baggy enough to get in your way or caught up in the machinery.
  • Brightly colored clothing will help alert people to your presence and that the machine is in operation.

Safety On-Site

  • Learn how to use a fire extinguisher and know exactly where they are located.
  • Know the emergency procedure for your site, and how to respond in the event of a major fire, earthquake, or tornado.
  • Know where a first aid kit is located and use it to clean any small wounds immediately.
  • Keep your area and your own tools organized. Leaving out tools, or debris in walkways creates a hazard in the event of an emergency. Letting others borrow even basic equipment might be putting them at risk for injury if they don’t know how to use it properly.

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