United Rentals announced a major industry milestone in April when its Trench Safety Training Program exceeded 100,000 construction workers trained in Confined Space Entry and Excavation Safety for Competent Persons.
The achievement includes a record 17,375 workers trained in 2013 through the company’s classroom training held monthly at more than 70 trench safety branches, as well as its train-the-trainer program and online platform.
United Rentals, a leading provider of equipment rental services in North America, has steadily expanded its trench safety training program with resources that help contractors comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements. Over the past two years, the company has introduced online training options, launched classroom sessions in Canada, developed a customizable train-the-trainer process and initiated Spanish-language training in the United States.
Brett Sondergard, Sales and Marketing Director for United Rentals Trench Safety, says, “We believe that effective training, combined with the optimal piece of safety equipment or engineered shoring system, creates the best defense against onsite injuries. As the largest trench safety provider in North America, we’ve dedicated our resources to help our customers achieve accident prevention and regulatory compliance.”
In 2013, the United Rentals Trench Safety training department doubled its staffing to further its plans for expansion. Today, full-time, professional instructors conduct trench safety and confined space entry courses on a regular schedule nationwide, with a bilingual option for Hispanic workers. New programs will be launched in the coming weeks to integrate visual, auditory and kinesthetic learning styles.
In addition, United Rentals has developed one of the industry’s most comprehensive train-the-trainer programs for customers with a large internal safety department. Train-the-trainer is designed to provide all the materials needed for a company to train its own workers on trench safety awareness and best practices. Its scope includes presentations, manuals and an instruction kit, with a private label option for large enterprises. The materials are used by the company’s internal trainers, who are first trained by United Rentals on the curriculum.
Latest Development: United Academy
This month, United Rentals will introduce a groundbreaking concept called United Academy — a dedicated site that serves as an interactive training hub for more than 50 courses offered by the company, as well as outside training courses. Customers will be able to use United Academy to purchase, organize, assign, conduct and track employee safety training.
United Academy’s online toolbox will give customers visibility into every United Rentals course offered in the United States and Canada, searchable by location and date range. Employers will be able to add outside training courses to this view, including training that is self-performed by workers.
United Academy is also mobile-enabled: Upon completion of the first Academy class, a worker will receive a wallet card with a unique QR code. When scanned with a mobile device, the code will display each class completed by that worker, with associated completion and renewal dates.
United Rentals anticipates that its United Academy technology will advance the use of professional safety training among companies of all sizes. The company will provide the technology at no cost to customers.
“In today’s construction and industrial environments, a safety record is just as important as a bid number when it comes to winning jobs,” explains Casey Willett, Region Customer Training Manager for United Rentals. “Safety has become more essential than ever as a way to conduct profitable business. Whether you employ five or 5,000 employees, the strategy should be to protect your workers with a best-in-class program that fits your particular needs.”
For more information on United Rentals, visit www.unitedrentals.com.