Of all the new and exciting things going on at NFPA recently, one of the things that has me most excited is the new types of training being developed and the new places training is being held. With a background in the training world prior to coming on board here at NFPA, I tend to get nearly as excited about new electrical safety training as my daughter does on that final day of the school year in mid-June. This year I have had the pleasure of being a part of the team that developed the first offering of a new workshop format for NFPA electrical safety training.
This particular workshop is just a taste of the direction in which future NFPA electrical trainings could be headed. The workshop is Developing an Electrical Safety Program Based on NFPA 70E and has been a joint effort in development between NFPA and Mr. SeaRay Beltran (picture at right). With facility managers, building owners, safety directors, and anyone else responsible for electrical safety in the workplace in mind, we developed a one-day workshop that walks participants through many of the activities necessary in the development of an electrical safety program. This workshop is a departure from traditional electrical safety training because very little time is spent on the content of NFPA 70E® and almost all of the time is focused on practicing the process of developing and electrical safety program. As much as I like to hear the sound of my own voice, standing in front of a class and rattling off requirements from 70E seem a bit counter-productive.
Throughout my career I have been through class after class where the instructor stood in front of the class and poured out a wealth of knowledge hoping that a good amount would stick. However, statistics show that only about 5% of information delivered in the straight lecture format is retained, whereas, practice by doing has around a 75% retention rate. That is why I am so excited about this class! Participants start out by having the stage set of how a breakdown in safety has landed them as the new facilities director for a fictitious university and now they are tasked with developing a new electrical safety program that will not repeat the previous program’s mistakes. They’ll start by examining the old plan to identify what went wrong and then determine who needs to be a part of the team to develop the new plan. From there, participants walk through the process of determining what safety controls must be a part of the program and what procedures must be developed as part of the process. We’ll walk through a risk assessment, how to determine whether or not energized work is justified, and it will all culminate in the capstone project that has participants work on their own to develop the program for the on-campus hospital.
The combination of doing the work with guidance from NFPA experts will give the participants the tools they need to go back to their place of business and develop a solid program of their own. Another highlight of this one-day workshop is the fact that we have the opportunity to offer the first one in SeaRay’s home state of Hawaii, on the island of Maui! This brings NFPA electrical training to the Hawaiian Islands and gives local folks the opportunity to take our training in their own backyard, however, this doesn’t mean that it’s only open to Hawaiians. By all means feel free to join us no matter where you are at.
To piggy back on the opportunity to bring the workshop to Hawaii, NFPA has also decided to offer our standard 2-day NFPA 70E® Classroom training with certificate of educational achievement in the two days prior to the workshop. So for those who need to get up to speed with all of the requirements of the 2018 edition of NFPA 70E before going through the workshop, the option is there for a full 70E seminar ending with how to develop an electrical safety program. Then, after the dust clears, you’re still in Hawaii! It’s a win-win, NFPA 70E and Maui. How does electrical safety training get any better?