This class can also be taught at your location. Request a quote.
Every excavation must have a competent person on site. By definition, a competent person is someone who can identify all existing and predictable hazards, and has the authority to take corrective action and eliminate worker exposure to the hazard.
“Eliminating worker exposure” means the competent person has the authority to stop work operations until the hazard is abated.
The skills required to effectively serve as a competent person depends on the nature of the excavation and the requirements of the employer’s excavation safety program.
At a minimum, most competent persons must have an understanding of:
- Basic excavation and soils terminology.
- Signs and causes of cave-ins.
- Basic soil mechanics and soil classification.
- Protective systems (sloping, shoring, shielding).
- Dewatering systems and requirements.
- Hazardous atmopsheres: testing and ventilation.
- Safety planning.
- Conducting inspections.
This is a two-day course that meets a variety of strict government safety requirements including those promulgated by OSHA, the Department of Energy, and the US Army Corps of Engineers.
There are no formal pre-requisites but most students have an understanding of basic construction safety principles.
At the end of this class the students should be able to:
- List the primary hazards faced by workers in excavations.
- Summarize the content and scope of the OSHA excavation standards.
- Calculate the approximate lateral earth pressue based on soil type, depth, and spoil pile height.
- Identify signs of distress in or around an excavation.
- Protect workers from falling soil and rocks.
- Properly install and use shoring or shields.
- Construct slopes and benches following tabulated data.
- Protect workers from water and atmospheric hazards.
- Ensure adequate access and egress.
- Properly plan for emergencies.