How to Get Your OSHA 500 Certification
For many individuals who work in the construction industry and have a strong understanding of construction safety and industry standards, obtaining OSHA 500 certification is a logical step in their advancing career path. This special certification enables those who have it to serve as a trainer through OSHA’s outreach education program and educate others on construction safety via OSHA’s 10 and 30 hour structured safety courses.
Some are motivated to become trainers by a desire to conduct safety training for their own employees, and others are interested in the outreach training certification because it is often required for advanced positions in the construction field.
In either case, certain steps need to be taken to hold a valid OSHA 500 certification; they include meeting all program requirements, finding an education center, taking the OSHA 500 course, and passing the written exam on completion of the course.
1. Obtain All Prerequisites
The first step in achieving OSHA 500 certification is making sure you meet both of the primary program requirements.
Each student must have a working knowledge of industry specific safety standards and guidelines that spans a minimum of five years. In the event that an individual has achieved a bachelor’s degree in occupational safety and health or currently holds credentials as a Certified Industrial Hygienist or Safety Professional, the job history requirement can be reduced to three years.
The second requirement is the completion of an OSHA 510 class which provides a deeper understanding of the health standards and construction safety regulations set forth by OSHA.
Students cannot be excused from meeting both the experience prerequisite and training requirement before seeking their certification. A lengthy work history will not be considered in place of the required training. However, students who believe they have taken a course with comparable curriculum to the OSHA 510 may be able to use their prior training to fulfill the requirements.
2. Select an OSHA Education Center
OSHA training has been in consistent demand for several decades, and the OSHA Training Institute has recognized the need for a wider reaching outreach program by collaborating with certain institutions and allowing them to provide OSHA certification training.
These training centers are located throughout the United States, and there is a minimum of one training institution per each identified OSHA region in North America. OSHA provides a list of these recognized centers by region on their website (http://www.osha.gov/dte/edcenters/current_list.html).
Once an official OSHA training education center has been chosen, students can obtain course information, schedules and tuition information from each center’s website.
3. Complete the OSHA 500 Course and Written Exam
The next step in OSHA 500 certification is to fulfill the requirements of the OSHA 500 course and pass the written exam given at the conclusion of the class.
Students who have completed the course will have an extensive knowledge of OSHA standards as they relate to the construction industry. They will also leave with an understanding of the training methods used to educate others in the course material determined by OSHA.
Once a student has completed the course and passed their written exam, they will receive their OSHA 500 certification, allowing them to act as an official OSHA trainer and conduct their own basic 10 and 30 hour OSHA recognized construction safety classes.