FIREFIGHTER ANNUAL REFRESHER TRAINING GUIDANCE
FOR COMPLIANCE WITH PERTINENT OSHA STANDARDS AS REQUIRED IN THE NYS PUBLIC EMPLOYEE SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT
ANNUAL FIREFIGHTER TRAINING
The intent of this document is to define the pertinent OSHA/PESH requirements which require annual refresher training designed to maintain proficient firefighter knowledge, skills and abilities in accordance with 29 CFR 1910.156(c)(2) and increase overall firefighter safety in accordance with other applicable OSHA/PESH standards.
This document pertains only to the annual refresher training. Fire Departments should refer to the OFPC Best Practices for Fire Department Training Document for suggested courses to meet the requirements of initial training and/or for the appropriate training for additional roles in the FD.
OSHA/PESH REQUIRED ANNUAL TRAINING:
Below is a chart outlining OSHA/PESH topics required for all Fire Departments to conduct annually for all members so that those members demonstrate knowledge and proficiency in the topics listed.
Hazardous Materials/Emergency Response 1910.120(q)(8)
Respiratory Protection 1910.134(k)(5)
Blood Borne Pathogen 1910.1030(g)(2)(ii)(B)
Right to Know Article 28 Section 878
Workplace Violence NYCRR Part 800.6
Fire Extinguishers (if required to use) 1910.157(g)(2)
OSHA/PESH Standard 29 CFR 1910.156(c)(2)
In addition to the above required training, OSHA/PESH Standard 29 CFR 1910.156(c)(2) requires that Fire Department Training Programs be designed to address annually the proficiency of each member’s knowledge and abilities as it relates to that member’s expected assignment.
Such assignments may include Exterior Firefighter, Interior Firefighter, Apparatus Operator, Fire Officer/Incident Commander and Fire Training Officer.
The annual refresher training should be comprised of current content and of sufficient duration so that each member can demonstrate knowledge and abilities in their assigned duties. It is important to maintain documentation of all training conducted to comply with these requirements While no specific time is allotted to the annual training or specific topics (e.g. 8 hours), this clarification is not intended to shorten the previously established timeframe, but to provide you with the flexibility to adjust the length of time spent on specific topics that your department feels are more or less necessary.
The OFPC Best Practices for Fire Department Training Programs document outlines subject matter that can be considered for annual refresher training for each member’s expected assignment. Fire Departments must document each member’s annual proficiency training to maintain knowledge, skills and ability proficiencies as related to that member’s expected assignment.
This annual refresher requirement does not take into account special operations or activities that would exceed the requirements for this refresher training and should be considered separately based on the needs of the firefighters assigned to those activities.
In addition to subject area topics discussed in a firefighter’s initial training, additional topics for annual refresher training may include those listed below. It is also important to maintain an awareness of current fire service trends and advancements as they relate to your Fire Department and response area.
SOME SUGGESTED TOPICS MAY INCLUDE:
- Hazard Recognition,
- Fire Station Safety,
- Response Safety,
- Fire Scene Safety,
- Protective Clothing,
- SCBA Use,
- Tools and Equipment.
The overriding consideration when determining the appropriateness of fire service training intended to address annual firefighter refresher training is:
- Does the training relate to the expected duties and assignments of the firefighter;
- Does it provide a means to refresh or evaluate competencies the firefighter is expected to
- perform; and
- Does the training increase the level of safety for the firefighter.