Are Your Competent Persons Really Competent?

Trained competent persons are essential to any effective fall protection program.  OSHA, ANSI and equipment manufacturers require competent persons to identify existing and predictable hazards, train authorized persons, supervise work at heights and inspect fall protection equipment.

But, many organizations struggle to measure the knowledge of their personnel in these areas.  Even if management—or individuals themselves—feel they need additional training, it is not always clear what the appropriate length and content of a competent person training course should be—especially when training providers offer anything from 4- to 40-hour courses. 

This has become an even greater challenge with the 15+ responsibilities listed in ANSI Z359.2-2007.  The ANSI standards are at the opposite end of the spectrum from OSHA, which gives little information about specific requirements.  So, how do you gauge the knowledge of your employees?  How do you identify their knowledge gaps for your specific fall hazard circumstances? You can save time and money if you do it right and your people can apply it to creating a safer working environment.

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