Excavation Safety and Backhoe/Front-End Loader Training and Licensing

Notice of New Regulation (MA) - 520 CMR 6.00: Hoisting Machinery (click on link for full information) - DEADLINE EXTENDED TO SEPTEMBER 1, 2014. 

Hoisting Operators FAQ.

NEWWA offers a comprehensive excavation safety and backhoe/front-end loader training program to interested students.

Excavation Safety/Competent Person Training:
This course presents key trenching/excavation topics, including soil analysis, protective systems (sloping, shoring, shielding), hazardous atmospheres, excavation site safety, and hazard recognition. 

OSHA's excavation standard states that a competent person is: "one who is capable of identifying existing and predictable hazards in the surroundings, or working conditions which are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to employees and has authorization to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate them." OSHA requires a competent person to perform soil analyses and determine the protective system to be used in excavations. Daily inspections are also required. Inspection personnel must also be trained in the regulations. 

This program is designed for water utility professionals, both management and operations, who desire competent person proficiency in trenching/excavations as it applies to the OSHA regulations. It will also be of interest to public works and construction professionals involved in excavation/trenching. Please note: This course is not offered as a certification program. The examination is designed to demonstrate proficiency only.

Backhoe/Front-End Loader Training:
The backhoe/front-end loader training course provides aspiring equipment operators (backhoe and front-end loader) with practical, classroom-based instruction, coupled with thorough, hands-on skill training. Classroom sessions cover machine principles, operating principles, trenching and excavating, and special safety considerations. Hands-on, field training utilizes actual equipment (backhoe and front-end loader), and incorporates extensive, individualized instruction. Each student is allowed ample opportunity to train on each piece of equipment with close supervision, developing specific skills (through practice exercises and skill drills), varying from performing pre-operational inspections, to loading and trenching. Class size is limited to optimize the learning experience.

Before taking “Hands-On Backhoe and Front End Loader Operator Training,” each registrant must complete the NEWWA course: “Excavation Safety: Are You A Competent Person?” (or equivalent - see description above).

Licensing in Massachusetts:
Those seeking to become licensed backhoe/front-end loader operators in Massachusetts (Department of Public Safety, Division of Inspection), must apply separately to take the examination (practical), and pay an additional (non-refundable) fee. The Massachusetts licensing examination will be administered following completion of both, 1-day backhoe/front end loader operator training courses. 

Registrants are not required to take the Massachusetts Licensing Examination (MA Department of Public Safety, Division of Inspection) following the course. For questions regarding the exam and procedures, contact Jeanne Gilpin.  

New England Water Works Association   125 Hopping Brook Road   Holliston, MA   01746   PH: (508) 893-7979   FAX:(508) 893-9898

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