(Note: ANSI and ASSE recently released a new, revised edition of ANSI Z490.1. This article has been updated to cover the new, revised, 2016 version.)
In a recent post, we introduced ANSI Z490.1 and gave a quick overview of it and its seven sections.
ANSI Z490.1 is important because it’s the national standard that lists criteria for accepted practices in safety, health, and environmental training. So if EHS training is part of your job responsibilities, it is definitely worth your time to get to know ANSI Z490.1.
So with no further delay, let’s turn our attention to Sections 1, 2, and 3 of the ANSI/ASSE Z490.1 standard on accepted criteria for EHS training.
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Section one covers the basics: scope, purpose, and application.
Let’s look at each.
This means you can use the ANSI Z490.1 standard to follow best practices, create better EHS trainig, and benchmark what you’re doing against these criteria.
In other words, it means you can use ANSI Z490.1 as a model or template to create your EHS training program or improve your current EHS training program.
And by scope, they make it clear that they’re talking about the following aspects of your EHS training program:
Now’s a good time to look inward and give yourself a gut-check. How well do you handle the management of your EHS training program? How about EHS training development, delivery, evaluation, and documentation/recordkeeping?
Are you confident that you’re on top of things? If so, great. Give yourself an ANSI Z490.1 Gold Star.
But if you’re not sure that you’re on top of all these aspects—or if you’ve never even thought about EHS training in this way—then it will definitely pay to dig deeper into this standard and learn what’s what.
The standard was written to provide people involved in EHS training a common set of criteria and best practices that they can use as a benchmark to evaluate their own training.
It’s a good goal, right? Nobody likes being told or expected to do something “well” when there’s no firm definition of what “well” means.
ANSI Z490.1 removes a lot of the mystery about effective EHS training by spelling things out for you. And it even gives you a process to follow. Nice!
Just involved in safety training? It applies to you. Just involved in health training? It applies to you. Just involved in environmental training? It applies to you. Involved in safety, health, and environmental training? You guessed it, it applies to you.
Are you involved in EHS training as part of a larger training effort? Yep, it applies to you.
Just involved in training development but not training delivery, evaluation or management? It applies to you. Just involved in delivery, evaluation, or management, but not the other parts? Again, and as you probably guessed, it applies to you.
The standard includes definitions of terms used within the standard.
I like it when standards do this. If you’re reading along and come to some important word and wonder what exactly that means, you can refer back to the definitions section.
That said, we’re not going to copy those definitions for you here, since they’re right there in the standard for you.
Buy a copy of the standard and check ‘em out.
Section 3 focuses on the management of your EHS training program.
The section begins by explaining that the EHS training program must be part of an overall EHS program, and that the integration of the EHS training program should include:
Every element of the EHS training program should have a person who’s responsible for it and a person who’s accountable for it. These don’t have to be the same people.
The responsible person is the person that will provide that element.
The accountable person is the person who will answer for each element.
Next, the standard explains that your EHS training should include provisions for:
The standard then spells out some pretty basic things your EHS training program should ensure, including the following:
Finally, Section 3 wraps up with some notes on evaluating the EHS training program.
Specifically, the standard says here that the EHS training program must be evaluated periodically, and specific aspects that should be evaluated include:
Well, that’s all we’ve got for you on Sections 1, 2, and 3 of ANSI Z490.1
Remember we encourage you to buy a copy of the standard (for $77) from ANSI.
In addition, our Effective EHS Training Guide is based on a lot of the stuff from ANSI Z490.1 and it includes a lot of additional resources too. If you’re interested, click the black box below to download a free copy.
Learn how to design, create, deliver, and evaluate effective EHS training by following these best practices with our free step-by-step guide.