OSHA: computer-based training not enough

OSHA has high standards when it comes to employee safety training, and one of the things it has been stressing recently is that computer-based training alone does not meet those standards. Employers and employees alike in Texas should know that OSHA requires training that results in "mastery of the training material."

For many companies, this training material includes many interactive and physical components like the proper use of personal protective equipment. This means, then, that online training must be supplemented by more hands-on training with plenty of interaction between trainer and trainee. With this, trainees can refresh their skills and give trainers a way to assess trainees' progress.

OSHA notes that some employers try to provide this interactive element with a telephone hotline that allows trainees to speak with a trainer while undergoing online training. This, however, is still inadequate. Delayed interaction between trainer and trainee does not facilitate the latter's ability to learn and retain information.

This is not the first time that OSHA has interpreted its training standards in this way. However, it seems that many employers get the wrong impression when they see that the agency itself offers videos and various computer-based training programs on its website.

It's important for employers to know what OSHA expects since inadequate training can lead to injuries on the job and, with that, cases under workers' compensation law. Employees, for their part, can file for benefits without needing to prove that the employer was to blame for their injuries.

They may face, opposition, though, as employers have the right to deny payment if victims themselves were negligent. These are just a few reasons why victims may want to see a lawyer before filing for benefits. A lawyer may be especially helpful when mounting an appeal.

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