Career summary

Details for Occupational Health and Safety Technicians


Description

Collect data on work environments for analysis by occupational health and safety specialists. Implement and conduct evaluation of programs designed to limit chemical, physical, biological, and ergonomic risks to workers.

Tasks

  • Test workplaces for environmental hazards, such as exposure to radiation, chemical or biological hazards, or excessive noise.
  • Verify availability or monitor use of safety equipment, such as hearing protection or respirators.
  • Supply, operate, or maintain personal protective equipment.
  • Evaluate situations or make determinations when a worker has refused to work on the grounds that danger or potential harm exists.
  • Maintain all required environmental records and documentation.
  • Prepare or calibrate equipment used to collect or analyze samples.
  • Plan emergency response drills.
  • Recommend corrective measures to be applied based on results of environmental contaminant analyses.
  • Prepare or review specifications or orders for the purchase of safety equipment, ensuring that proper features are present and that items conform to health and safety standards.
  • Conduct worker studies to determine whether specific instances of disease or illness are job-related.
  • Inspect fire suppression systems or portable fire systems to ensure proper working order.
  • Maintain logbooks of daily activities, including areas visited or activities performed.
  • Provide consultation to organizations or agencies on the workplace application of safety principles, practices, or techniques.
  • Prepare documents to be used in legal proceedings, testifying in such proceedings when necessary.
  • Help direct rescue or firefighting operations in the event of a fire or an explosion.
  • Train workers in safety procedures related to green jobs, such as the use of fall protection devices or maintenance of proper ventilation during wind turbine construction.
  • Review records or reports concerning laboratory results, staffing, floor plans, fire inspections, or sanitation to gather information for the development or enforcement of safety activities.
  • Conduct interviews to obtain information or evidence regarding communicable diseases or violations of health or sanitation regulations.
  • Collect data related to ecological or human health risks at brownfield sites.
  • Test or balance newly installed HVAC systems to determine whether indoor air quality standards are met.
  • Collect data regarding potential hazards from new equipment or products linked to green practices.
  • Perform tests to identify any potential hazards related to recycled products used at green building sites.
  • Educate the public about health issues or enforce health legislation to prevent disease, to promote health, or to help people understand health protection procedures and regulations.
  • Examine credentials, licenses, or permits to ensure compliance with licensing requirements.
  • Confer with schools, state authorities, or community groups to develop health standards or programs.
  • Examine practices at green building sites to determine whether adherence to green building standards alters risks to workers.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Education, training, experience

  • Education - Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.

Knowledge

  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Physics - Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
  • Personnel and Human Resources - Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Building and Construction - Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Skills

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

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