OSHA 10 Construction Vs 10 Hour General Industry Training – Which One Do I Need?

OSHA 30 Hour Vs OSHA 10 Hour training

Training is a mandatory requirement for OSHA compliance, however, it can be a daunting task to figure out who needs OSHA training, what type, and how long the program should be based on job role. 

Below, we break down different types of OSHA training and who needs what, when, and how.

Why is OSHA Training Required?

Since 1971, OSHA has adopted and enforced safety standards to protect workers from work-related injury, illness, and death. 

As part of their mission, employers have to train employees on how to do their job safely. They must be taught about OSHA safety standards and how to comply. The requirement is not theoretical, as OSHA compliance officers WILL check that mandated training is up to date during an inspection. 

They have to verify that employees received appropriate training, that they understood it, and that the training adequately addressed the “requirements and intent” of the OSHA standards. 

So in this case, paperwork isn’t enough. The training has to be proven to be effective and comprehensive for each employee. 

Outreach courses typically cover the basics for an industry—10-Hour courses for workers, 30-Hour courses for supervisors and managers

Employers are also responsible for adding task-specific training for each worker according to their duties. It’s worth noting that the type of work that you engage in dictates the training you need, not the type of employer.

If you ask a maintenance worker to perform repair or hazardous waste disposal you are legally responsible for making sure they know how to safely complete that work. 

Sometimes there’s a fine distinction between maintenance and construction.  The scale and complexity of a job matters.

OSHA 10 Hour Vs 30 Hour Training

What is OSHA construction training?

OSHA Construction training addresses the specific safety needs of work on construction sites.  It covers 29 CFR 1926 (the construction-specific standards) and some of 1910 (general standards).

Who needs OSHA construction training?

You need OSHA Construction training if you’re a construction worker or contractor.  Entry-level workers need OSHA 10 Hour Construction Safety Training.  Workers may need additional training for specialized work.

Anyone with supervisory responsibilities should take OSHA 30-Hour Construction Safety Training.  This includes foremen, engineers, supervisors, project managers, and safety specialists.

what topics does OSHA construction training cover?

OSHA 10-Hour courses typically cover general topics like Introduction to OSHA, General Safety and Health Provisions and Hazard Communication.  They then focus on construction-specific topics such as: Cranes and Rigging, Electrical Safety, Struck-By, Caught In/Between Hazards, Fall Protection, Power Tools, Scaffolding and Ladders, as well as personal protective equipment needed to keep workers safe.

OSHA requires specific training before employees perform specialized work, including Confined Space Entry, Concrete and Masonry, Use of Explosives, or Welding Safety.  

Most heavy equipment use requires specific training. Those topics are not covered in the 10-Hour course, but they’re often rolled into the 30-Hour courses since supervisors are responsible for workers with a range of duties.

what is OSHA general industry training?

OSHA has specific standards for Construction, Maritime, and Agriculture. Any other employer or worker falls into the “General Industry.” category. This means the category covers everyone from manufacturing to warehouse, to office work. OSHA General Industry training covers standards in 29 CFR 1910.

who needs osha general industry training?

The broad nature of “General Industry” makes this question more difficult to answer. All employers have to conduct some basic workplace safety training. In low-risk industries, this will not involve anything as extensive as a 10-Hour course.

There are no universal rules for who requires 10-Hour or 30-Hour courses. Certain states or types of employers require it, so check local and industry practices.  

Generally speaking, workers in higher-risk fields need OSHA 10 certification in 10-Hour General Industry Training. That includes healthcare, factory operations, manufacturing, and warehousing.

Any workers that perform specialized tasks regulated under 1910 will need additional coursework. Foremen, engineers, supervisors, project managers, and safety specialists will need OSHA 30-Hour General Industry Training.

What topics does OSHA general industry training cover?

OSHA 10-Hour general courses cover universal topics: Introduction to OSHA, General Safety and Health Provisions, Emergency Plans, Personal Protective Equipment, and Hazard Communication.  A few of the topics are specific to industrial work like Electrical and Machine Guarding Safety.

Topics that require additional training are as varied as Bloodborne Pathogens certification, Ionizing and Non-Ionizing Radiation, and Confined Spaces.

other health and safety threats

The General Duty Clause of the Occupational Safety and Health Act says employers have to protect workers from all “recognized hazards.” This means they’re duty-bound to minimize risks that OSHA hasn’t spelled out, once they’re aware they exist.

This allows OSHA to hold employers responsible for health and safety issues that aren’t technically a violation of any particular standard.

Workers who are employed on sites specifically with the job of hazardous waste cleanup are required to complete OSHA HAZWOPER 40 Hour training.


OSHA training is crucial to both legal compliance and the safety of your workforce. These days, you can provide workers with online OSHA coursework instead of classroom training. It offers flexible scheduling and a self-paced experience for individual workers. It’s also more efficient, consistent, and cost-effective.

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