Why is it worth participating in OHS training?

students of health and safety trainingHealth and safety training is a course conducted before the employee is allowed to work. It includes general and workplace instruction. Its main goal is to inform the newly employed person about the dangers that may arise at a given workplace and to provide him with the necessary knowledge and skills to perform work, taking into account safety regulations, as well as the principles of first aid. The employer is also responsible for familiarizing the employee with the methods by which the newly hired person will be able to protect himself against hazards in the workplace and the methods that will ensure safe work performance. It is obvious that all these areas are company-specific and specific regulations differ depending on the type of organization in which the person is employed.

Who is the training for?

Training in the field of health and safety at work must be organized by the employer and the obligation to participate in it applies to every employee without exception. It is forbidden to allow employees to work without training and instruction. Each employee is obliged to participate in all training designated for him and to know the rules and regulations of health and safety. Courses are compulsory for every newly hired or recruited person, regardless of their position or type of work they are supposed to do. Also, employees who have been hired to learn a specific profession are subject to training. All seconded persons from other companies, specialists from external companies working in the assigned facility, as well as students and interns who undertake internships in a given company must undergo training.

Who can conduct them?

This course may be conducted by an occupational health and safety worker; a person who performs these tasks of this service in a given company or the employer himself who holds such a position. Also, such instruction can be carried out by an employee on behalf of the employer who has the appropriate knowledge and skills allowing for its optimal implementation and who has a current certificate confirming completion of the required training in a given field. The entire training course must not be less than 90 minutes.

Exemptions and penalties for failure to comply with the obligation

Every newly hired person as well as every employee is obliged to move on safety training. Failure to do so may result in fines from PLN 1,000 to PLN 30,000. A case that will go to court can cost up to 50,000.

Unlike the initial training, the employee may be dismissed from periodic training. However, these persons must submit an up-to-date certificate that they have completed the required training with a different employer or have completed training in a similar position or subject within a period of 6 or 12 months. The dismissal may also take place on the basis of relevant legal regulations.

What are the types of health and safety training?

We can distinguish two types of health and safety training:

  • Preliminary;
  • Periodic

Initial training in the field of health and safety at work is provided to all newly hired employees, regardless of their education and experience in a given profession or position, temporary workers, seconded workers, students and interns. Initial training is valid up to 12 months from the start of work, 6 months for managers. Such training is divided into two parts:

  • general instruction;
  • job training.

The general training acquaints the participants with the basic health and safety regulations contained in the Labor Code. During this training, the following should be presented: work regulations as well as health and safety regulations and rules that are in force in a given company. Also during such training, the employee learns the principles of first aid. The training should be conducted in the form of instructions using all didactic means such as: films, boards, first aid measures. This part lasts no less than 2 teaching hours and must be conducted in a stationary environment. It is mandatory for new employees, apprentices and apprentices to undergo this training.

On-the-job training is designed to familiarize participants with the factors of the working environment that occur in a given position and how to protect themselves against the risks that these factors may create. The training should also inform about possible risks that may arise in the performance of work, as well as present methods of safe performance of the profession. The form of implementation should be instruction based on a detailed program. The program should include: a preliminary interview, demonstration and explanation of the work process, trial and independent work of the employee under the supervision of an instructor, as well as checking and assessment by the instructor of the employee's work.

Periodic training in the field of occupational health and safety is repeated during employment. Its task is to recall and update knowledge and present new technical and organizational solutions. The frequency with which this training is carried out and its duration depend on the type and conditions of the work area. Such training should be carried out in the form of instruction, lecture or self-education, during which it is advisable to discuss the circumstances and causes of accidents that may occur and to present preventive conclusions.

OSH training instructor

Repeatability of periodic training - deadlines

Once a year, employees occupying blue-collar positions where work is carried out particularly dangerous, related to health hazards and accident hazards, are required to undergo training at the workplace and a lecture of a minimum duration of 6 hours (8 lesson hours).

Every three years, employees occupying other blue-collar positions are required to undergo training at the workplace and a lecture of a minimum duration of 6 hours (8 hours of lessons).

Every five years, periodic training is required for: the employer and other people managing employees (in particular managers, masters and foremen), as well as engineering and technical workers, technologists and production organizers, designers, constructors of machines and other technical devices. Training should take the form of a course, seminar or guided self-study with a minimum duration of 12 hours.

Also, every five years employees of OHS services and persons performing OHS tasks must undergo a course, seminar or guided self-education, which should last at least 24 hours, including 3 hours of exercises.

Employees exposed to hazardous, burdensome or harmful factors and employees whose work is related to responsibility in the field of occupational health and safety are required to undergo a course, seminar or self-education with a minimum duration of 6 hours every five years.

Every six years, administrative and office staff for whom a risk category higher than three has been established must take part in courses, seminars or guided self-study with a minimum duration of 6 hours.

Administrative and office workers for whom no higher than the third risk category has been established, do not have to undergo periodic training.