Training: Topics

“If you think education is expensive—try ignorance.” (Ann Landers)

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Why Provide Training?


Why? Consider the cost of an accident if you don’t train folks. For example, what happens if you have a new grader, worth about $350,000, and it is damaged due to mishandling by an operator lacking the proper training? Not only do you have to pay for repair (or replacement) of the grader, but there is also a cost in lost time and production.

Very damaged grader

Another way training can lower departmental costs is by reducing accident rates, risk (liability), and worker’s compensation premiums. The proper training can even save your employees’ money, because when they take defensive driving classes their personal insurance rates can be reduced.

Keep your workers safe

Construction workers, truck drivers, heavy machine operators, garbage collectors, and logging and tree workers perform some of the most dangerous jobs in the US according to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. These are all tasks that highway and public works departments are likely to be asked to do. Training can save lives.

This is the first part of a three-part series of Tech Tips that looks at different aspects of training for highway departments. This one discusses training topics that are useful for highway or public works departments. Another looks at organizations that can train you and/or members of your crew. The last Tech Tip talks about the different ways you can get training.

These Tech Tips are based on a workshop, How to Train Your Employees, conducted at the 2015 Highway School.

Training Topics

The following list is limited, with most topics being almost entirely for crews, and does not include administration, supervision, or engineering topics. If you have any suggestions for good training topics, please send them to us so that we can add them to this document.

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This work by the Cornell Local Roads Program (CLRP) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.