817 Training and Education

817.1 Management Training and Education

817.11 Postmasters, Managers, and Supervisors

All Postmasters, managers, and supervisors must receive safety and health training in accordance with the curriculum established by Safety and OSHA Compliance Programs (SOCP) and Learning and Development. Local offices, districts, and Headquarters provide this training. Postmasters, managers, and supervisors are encouraged to attend annual safety and health training.

817.12 Executives and Managers

Executives and managers at the plant level and above must be provided an orientation that discusses their responsibility for:

  1. Safety and health program commitment, involvement, and accountability.
  2. OSHA compliance.
  3. Elements contained in a safety and health program evaluation.
  4. Accident investigation and reporting.
  5. Safety and health training requirements.
  6. Accident reduction plans (ARPs).
  7. Ergonomics.

817.2 Safety and Health Staff Training and Education

817.21 Safety Specialists

All safety staff must obtain a level of expertise in safety training through participation in and completion of the core curriculum safety courses taught by the National Center for Educational Development (NCED), or as established by SOCP. Safety personnel must be provided, at least annually, professional training and education to enable them to carry out their basic duties and to fulfill their roles as advisors and consultants to management. To maintain their technical proficiency, safety personnel are encouraged to pursue professional credentials and advanced education, and to participate in professional safety and health-related organizations. Management must give a high priority to supporting these efforts to realize a professional safety staff. Specialized training not available within the Postal Service may be authorized in accordance with 740.

817.22 Facility Safety Coordinators

Facility safety coordinators (FSCs) must obtain a level of safety expertise commensurate with their responsibilities through the FSC training course and the Safety for Supervisors course. Annual attendance of at least 8 hours of safety training is required. Management must give FSC training a high priority.

817.3 Joint Labor–Management Safety and Health Committee Orientation

Each member of a local committee must receive an orientation by the Postal Service that includes:

  1. Responsibilities of the committee and its members.
  2. OSHA compliance.
  3. Basic elements of the safety and health program to include safety inspections.
  4. Identification and analysis of hazards and unsafe practices, including job safety analysis, and ergonomic task analysis.
  5. Explanation of reports and statistics to be reviewed and analyzed by the committee.

To meet the requirements listed above, safety and health committee members must attend the Safety and Health Committee training course (specified in Handbook EL-809T, Area/Local Joint Labor-Management Safety and Health Committee Training).

817.4 General Safety Orientation for Employees

All employees, including non-career employees, must receive a general safety and health orientation and sufficient on-the-job training to enable them to follow safe work practices, to recognize hazards, and to understand the benefits to be gained by following safe work practices. Such training must also include:

  1. Site-specific safety rules,
  2. Specific job safety analyses,
  3. Required OSHA programs,
  4. Emergency evacuation procedures, and
  5. OSHA rights and responsibilities (see 817.5).

817.5 Training Required by OSHA


Reference Note:

For further information about training required by OSHA, refer to the following Handbook (HBK) and Management Instructions (MIs):

Maintenance Management Orders (MMOs) on safety-related subjects such as lockout/tagout, hazard communication, and personal protective equipment are available on the Maintenance Technical Support Center’s Web site: www.mtsc.usps.gov.

Additional guidance is available in the Safety Training Matrix located on the Safety Resources Web site. Go to http://blue.usps.gov/wps/portal in the left column, under “Essential Links,” click on Safety Resources, then click A to Z Index, then Safety Training.

817.51 Standard Curriculum

Learning and Development, in coordination with SOCP and other Headquarters functional areas, is responsible for developing, implementing, and keeping current a safety and health training curriculum to comply with OSHA standards and Postal Service policies. Managers and supervisors at all levels must refer to this curriculum and ensure that all affected employees are trained and that training is current and properly recorded.

817.52 Special Emphasis Training Programs

Special emphasis training programs must be developed and initiated by Headquarters, areas, districts, plants, and other offices, as appropriate, to:

  1. Reduce the principal causes of accidents and injuries, musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and occupational illnesses, and
  2. Ensure compliance with OSHA requirements.
817.53 Training in Handling Hazardous Materials

In installations where employees handle or transport potentially hazardous materials, the installation head must establish a program of promoting safety awareness through communications or training, as appropriate (see MI-EL-810-2008-4, Hazard Communication (HazCom) Program). Such a program must include, but is not limited to, the following elements:

  1. Posting information, pamphlets, or articles in Postal Service publications, such as area bulletins, and use of distributed posters or videos.
  2. Distribution of current Publication 52, Hazardous, Restricted, and Perishable Mail, to employees whose duties may require acceptance or dispatch of hazardous, restricted, or perishable items.
  3. Distribution of current Handbook EL-812, Hazardous Materials and Spill Response, to employees whose duties may include handling of hazardous materials and initial response to spills and leaks (First Responder Awareness Level). Acceptance and dispatch personnel must use Tag 44, Sack Contents Warning, to appropriately identify all mailbags containing only biological substances in Category “B” (UN 3373).
  4. Training in on-the-job awareness for employees whose duties may require the handling or transportation of hazardous, restricted, or perishable items. Training must include, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. Hazard identification,
    2. Proper handling of hazardous materials,
    3. Personal protective equipment availability and use, and
    4. Cleanup and disposal requirements for hazardous materials.

This includes Aviation Mail Security hazardous materials training.

817.6 Refresher Training

Motor vehicle, powered industrial truck, asbestos, hazardous materials, and other refresher training programs must be provided and updated as needed per OSHA regulations and Postal Service policies. Such programs must also be used for correcting improper work practices before accidents result and for improving work practices after an accident.

Refresher training requirements are included in the Safety Training Matrix located on the Safety Resources Web site.

817.7 Training in New or Additional Equipment and Techniques

Training must be provided when new or additional equipment or techniques are deployed that may, if not properly used, adversely affect safe and healthful working conditions, OSHA compliance, or both.

817.8 OSHA Job Safety and Health Protection Posters

Each facility must post OSHA Poster 3165, Job Safety and Health Protection, in a conspicuous place. This poster outlines management responsibilities and employee responsibilities and rights under the OSH Act. Poster 3165 and the Spanish-language version, Poster 3167, are available from the Material Distribution Center.

817.9 Training Records

For each employee, records of safety and health training must be maintained to demonstrate compliance with Postal Service policies and OSHA requirements. The records must be retained and available to allow inspection by Postal Service and OSHA officials. All safety training must be recorded in the Learning Management System (LMS).

Note: Documentation of safety talks and safety-related on-the-job training must be maintained either at the facility level or in the case of safety talks, in the Safety Talks module of the Safety Toolkit. These records must be available to allow inspection in a timely manner.