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Sunday, December 31, 2023

Happy New Year!!!! Here's to Hoping Your Holidays Were Merry and The New Year Will Be Fabtastic!

Happy New Year!  Future Environment Designs, Inc. wishes that all of you had a Merry Holidays and will have a Happy New Year!  This year was a little of a roller coaster ride for us starting with some ups at the beginning of the year, some downs at the middle of the year, and then back to some ups at the end!  We like that we ended on a high note and it looks to continue into the new year.  With us entering our 36th year in business we continue to adjust our offerings to meet your training requirements.

Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center

Starting in September 2024, individuals who have Site Safety Training (SST) cards that will expire in September of 2025 must take a refresher course to renew the SST cards (which expire after five years),  That refresher course consists of a 4-hour fall prevention course and 4-hour supported scaffold user course that we are bundling together and will be part of our regular schedule.  To read more about these training requirements for New York City construction workers read our blog post "Final Phase of New York City Training Requirements for Construction Workers Arrives on March 1, 2021".  We have teamed with All New York City Training to offer the SST refresher course and the SST initial course at our facility in Syosset or their facility in Ridgewood.  We are also working with them to start offering the Environmental Protection Agency's Lead Renovator, Remodeler, and Painting (RRP) Course at both facilities, too. 

Bergdorf Goodman Window Display

We continue to offer training throughout Long Island (we have a mold worker and remediation/supervisor initial course coming up in East Hampton), Plattsburgh, Rochester (we are planning a mold worker/remediation/supervisor/assessor in the future), Queens, and Manhattan.  In other words, we will provide training and our other services at your convenience anywhere your workers are located.  We look forward to meeting your training requirements!  May your new year be happy and we look forward to seeing you in 2024!

Saks Window Display

Monday, November 27, 2023

Save the Date for PACNY's 2024 Environmental Conference February 15-16, 2024!

The Professional Abatement Contractors of New York (PACNY) have announced the dates for next year's Annual Environmental Conference.  The Environmental Conference will be held on February 15th & 16th, 2024 at the Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York.  We are looking forward to attending the premier conference for the New York asbestos abatement industry.

Dale Chihuly's sculpture "Tree of Peace"

This year we have been part of the Conference Committee and it has been working hard (as in past years) to make this conference better than last year!  The Keynote Speaker of the conference this year is:

Michael Rubin

OSHA Attorney at Ogletree

He is a shareholder and OSHA lawyer at Ogletree Deakins, a premier labor and employment defense firm with offices worldwide. He has over 20 years of experience and focuses his practice exclusively on handling OSHA matters nationwide in federal and state-plan jurisdictions. He has handled OSHA matters in over 30 states, including construction and environmental contractors. He is also a Certified Safety Professional (CSP), demonstrating his knowledge and commitment to occupational safety and health.
"My mission is to help employers protect their workers, their businesses, and their reputations from OSHA inspections, citations, and enforcement actions. I guide employers through the OSHA inspection process, from the opening conference to the closing conference, and assert their rights and interests at every stage. I also contest and litigate OSHA citations, including through trial, and develop and audit safety programs and policies. I counsel employers on risk-management strategies and best practices to ensure compliance and prevent accidents. I am passionate about delivering effective and efficient OSHA defense solutions to my clients and staying updated on the latest OSHA developments and trends."

The conference will start at 8:00 AM on Thursday, February 15, 2024, with multiple sessions by Industry Leaders.  The Vendor Happy Hour will run from 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM that same day.  Friday will be the Keynote Speaker, and the New York State Department of Labor Roundtable with a question and answer session with the regulators.  Ending the conference with a networking lunch.  Aramsco, Dival Safety, Lovell Safety Management Co., LLC, Lozier Environmental Consulting, Inc., and Paradigm Environmental Services are some of the sponsors of this year's conference, to join these sponsors click here.  As usual, Future Environment Designs will be one of the sponsors of the conference and will have a table in the Exhibit Hall.  Reserve your spot at the conference here.  We hope to see you there!

Visit us at our Booth in the Exhibit Hall

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Celebrating the Next Milestone - Future Environment Designs Celebrates 35 Years.

This month we celebrate Future Environment Designs, Inc. being in business for 35 years.  We must say the last 5 years have been harder than the first 30 years.  Of course, it doesn't help that we're getting older and we had to deal with all the COVID training requirements, too.  We want to thank all of you who have helped us these past years by continuing to attend training with us.  We couldn't have survived without you.  We are honored that many of you enjoy our training by rating us at a 4.8 rating out of 5 with over 2,000 reviews on CourseCheck, thank you!  

Thank you for helping us stay in business for 35 years

We are really proud of some of the things we have done in the last five years.  Last year, we published the three Asbestos Air Sampling Charts (these three charts provide the requirements for Federal, New York State, and New York City air sampling requirements and can be purchased here) the research for that led us to write the blog post "The Reality of Asbestos Clearance Sampling! Are You Sampling Enough"Working with Tom Laubenthal and Dana Brown on writing that blog post led us to write the article "You Can't Handle The Truth.....About Final Clearance Sampling" which was published in Healthy Indoors Magazines.  

Asbestos Air Sampling Charts

Since 2021, our Safety Suzy Newsletter has been written by Natasha Serafimovska of LaserCue, LLP.  She has taken a significant weight off our shoulders and has continued to keep our Safety Suzy Newsletter relevant to our client base.  In addition, she has written two blog posts "5 Benefits of Online Safety Training" and "Safety Training That Works: How FED Keeps Its Courses Fresh and Engaging" that have been well-received and have attracted significant interest in our courses.

Safety Suzy created by Alyssa Garcia

In 2022, we were elected to the board of the Professional Abatement Contractors of New York (PACNY).  We are honored and thank those who elected us to the Board.  We look forward to helping the organization achieve its goals.  Future Environment Designs will be sponsoring the 2024 Environmental Conference (as we usually do) that will be held on February 15 - 16, 2024.  So save the date, if you would like to sponsor the conference and/or reserve your place in the Exhibition Hall click here!

2023 PACNY Environmental Conference.

Last year, we worked with FermionX, Ltd. a United Kingdom (UK) electronics manufacturer of industrial product brands including the Airbox Sampling Pumps.  We were requested to review their product and determine if their product would be a good fit for the USA market.  Our working with them led to our blog post and the video "Two Guys Talking About Pumps".  This then led to FermionX, Ltd. taking a booth at the 2023 PACNY Environmental and the American Industrial Hygiene Association Conference.  In addition, two of our clients ended up with free pumps to test in the field.

We are looking forward to the next five years as we continue to serve the New York State region and the adjacent states by providing asbestos, mold, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliance training.  We will continue to offer in-person training on Long Island, Plattsburgh, Westchester, New York City, and Rochester, New York, and for those who can't make the in-person training, we will continue to offer virtual asbestos, mold, and OSHA compliance training courses.  Don't forget we also offer e-learning courses in asbestos awareness (complies with the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) and the OSHA Class IV training requirements), New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) exam prep courses, OSHA respirator user, OSHA silica, OSHA lead, and OSHA mold in construction courses, bloodborne pathogens, EPA AHERA designated person course and hazard communication with or without the New York State Right-to-Know supplement (NYS Public Employee Safety and Health (PESH) annual requirement).  To ensure you have everything you need for work we also provide quantitative respirator fit testing and respirator medical evaluations to ensure you can wear a respirator and make sure it fits you.  This will make you compliant with the OSHA respirator standard.  

Quantitative Respirator Fit Testing (QNFT) at Future Environment Designs, Inc.

So we hope to see all of you for the next five years to celebrate 40 years in business. As for me personally, our plan is to make it to the 50-year mark which will put us at 79 years old (wow that will be old).  That would be amazing for a person who thought he would not survive past 45 years old and the statistic that 50% of companies don't survive 5 years.  We hope to see all of you for the next 15 years as we try to achieve 50 years in business.  

Angelo Garcia, III training OSHA 10-Hour Construction Training Course


Wednesday, August 02, 2023

The 2023 PACNY Fishing Derby - A Beautiful Day on the Lake But Where Are All The Fish?

On Wednesday, July 12, 2023, the Professional Abatement Contractors of New York (PACNY) held its 10th Annual Salmon Fishing PROAM tournament in Point Breeze, New York.  19 Boats were part of this year's tournament, one more than last year's tournament.  Unfortunately, Future Environment Design's boat this year was down two and only included Ms. Veronica Hansen-Garcia and Angelo Garcia, III but we were in the same boat as the previous year's "Catchin' Hell" piloted by Captain Tom Murray and First Mate Mike.

Sun coming up off Point Breeze

We would to send a great big "THANK YOU" to Darren Yehl of Cornerstone Training (CTI) and PACNY for organizing this event.  This event allows us to catch up with many of the PACNY members and see how the year is doing.  Here was this year's line-up of PACNY members and boats:

  • Cornerstone - Sunrise II
  • Cornerstone  - Legacy
  • Lozier - Richmond II Salmon Doctor
  • United Rentals - Tomahawk
  • Paradigm Environmental - Shotgun
  • Paradigm Environmental - Gone Costal
  • Sessler Environmental Services - Intimidator 
  • Republic - Double Trouble
  • Republic - Troutman
  • Future Environment Designs - Catchin’ Hell
  • Expert Environmental - Get Hooked
  • Abscope Environmental - Make the Turn
  • DiVal - Rally Killer
  • Aramsco - Mister 
  • Aramsco- Lake Runner
  • AAC Contracting - Bite Me
  • First On-site - 3 Dogs
  • Metro Environmental - Rusty Lure
  • Cornerstone - Bait Master

Our catch was a bleeder.

A beautiful day on the lake it was actually a perfect temperature with a slight breeze.  This was the first time we took a nap while fishing which was only possible because we only caught one fish the whole time from 6 am to noon.  Though it seems we weren't the only ones.  Thank you again Darren Yehl for making our trip worthwhile by giving us the fish you and your team caught.   After the weigh-in, a catered buffet lunch was provided by the Black North Inn, delicious as always, and the trophies/prizes were awarded.  This year's winners were:  

First On-Site with Captain Jason Matthews of 3 Dogs Sportfishing

We enjoy our trip to Point Breeze every year, however, we have a little trepidation about next year.  The fishing was really bad this year and it looks like we will be missing Sheryl & Matt, again next year.  We will have to decide what Future will do next year.  The event next year will be Wednesday, July 10, 2024.  We hope to see you next year! 


Thursday, July 06, 2023

Book Report: "World War C - Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic and How To Prepare for the Next One" by Sanjay Gupta, MD

As an industrial hygienist, we found this book a fascinating read.  So you can understand why we say "as an industrial hygienist" let's discuss what industrial hygiene is.  "Industrial Hygiene (IH) is a science and art devoted to the anticipation, recognition, evaluation, control, and confirmation of protection from those environmental factors or stresses arising in or from the workplace which may cause sickness, impaired health, and well-being, or significant discomfort among workers or among citizens of the community."  To learn more about IH click here.
Air Quality Sampling tools for the IH

Since the COVID-19 pandemic has been the most significant environmental factor of modern times it was interesting to read the number of meetings and the decisions made.  The book goes through discussions with many of the people making the decisions during COVID and was interesting how then Vice President Mike Pence understood the need to let the scientists do their job.  The section of the book covering how vaccinations work especially these newer mRNA vaccines and how they help the immune system repel invaders was informational and understandable.

Part 2 of the book, gives common sense recommendations for becoming pandemic-proof.  Becoming pandemic P.R.O.O.F. is actually an acronym for:
  • P - Plan ahead.
  • R - Rethink and rewire risk in your brain.
  • O - Optimize health.
  • O - Organize Family
  • F - Fight for the future of us.  
Obviously, part 2 goes into each of these giving recommendations.  These recommendations came from the "hundreds of hours of the writer's conversations with experts from all disciplines of our society."  Some of these recommendations are for our country but others are recommendations many of us could put into place for ourselves.   One of our favorite chapters was the chapter on "Rethink and Rewire Risk in Your Brain."  Obviously, at the beginning of this pandemic, very few of us had the knowledge of how to evaluate the risk involved.  But now we do.  The section specifically on avoiding traps was very interesting because of how many of us have these traps and how many friends and clients when discussing COVID had these traps.

If you're into reading readable scientific books we recommend reading this one.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

PACNY's 26th Annual Environmental Conference - On the Second Day Size Does Matter and NYSDOL's Response to Questions Upsets the Room! - Part Two

The second day of the Professional Abatement Contractors of New York's (PACNY's) 26th Annual Environmental Conference continued at Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Verona, New York with two presenters, the New York State Department of Labor Question and Answer (Q&A) Session, and the vendors in the Mohawk Room.

Mr. Craig Kaputa, the President of PACNY "State of the Union"

Two changes to the typical program were the moving of the keynote speaker to Friday (usually on Thursday) just before the NYSDOL Q&A session.  The other change was a PACNY State of the Union presentation by Craig Kaputa, the President of PACNY.  Both of these changes provided the participants with reasons to wake up early on Friday and hence many participants attended the two sessions where previously many participants slept in until the NYSDOL Q&A session.  

President's Award winner Mr. Russell Vent

Mr. Kaputa's presentation included the awarding of the President's Award to Russell Vent and the Lifetime Achievement Award to Kevin Cannan, of ACC Contracting.  Both are hard-working individuals that have done a lot to help PACNY currently and historically! 

Lifetime Achievement Award to Kevin Cannan

The keynote speaker was Lee Poye, Vice President Emeritus Eurofins Built Environment, discussing "Asbestos in Human Tissue and the Environment - Does Size Matter?"  His presentation provided plenty of evidence for using an air sampling method (Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM)) that would analyze fibers that are less than and equal to 5 microns in length, less than and equal to 0.25 microns in diameter, and aspect ratios less than or equal to 35:1.  Much of his presentation discussed what type of asbestos fibers were found in diseased human lung tissue.  The conclusion of Mr. Poye's presentation is that size does matter.

Lee Poye - Size Does Matter

After the last break with the Vendors in the Mohawk Room.  The conference continued with a pared-down New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL) Panel.  The attendees included Matthew Robinson-Loffler, the Deputy Director of NYSDOL, Kirk Fisher, Asbestos Control Bureau, and Edward Smith, PE Engineering Services Unit.  Mr. Robinson-Loffler informed everyone that soon individuals will be able to apply for their mold and asbestos certificates and licenses online.  In fact, at the writing of this blog post, this service is now available for mold licenses and certificates at  To read more about it: click here.  

Mr. Robinson-Loffler discussing online licenses & certifications

However, the biggest shock was the response to two questions one regarding soft/controlled demolition and the other regarding contamination assessments/incidental disturbances.  The first question was if there are building materials that don't contain asbestos that can be demoed with non-asbestos contractors.  This demo would not disturb the asbestos-containing materials behind these building materials.  The answer was that demo cannot be done until all asbestos-containing materials are removed.  The second question was based on an asbestos inspector and contractor being issued a violation for not including the surfaces to be cleaned as part of the quantities to be notified.  The response was that the area to be cleaned is the notifiable quantity, not the incidental disturbance quantity.  This seemed to get the whole room agitated and proceeded to involve several more questions on this topic.  Mr. Kirk Fisher attempted to answer these questions but his answers only seemed to make matters worse.  It is interesting that this last issue was covered by Mr. James Meachum, PE, the former NYSDOL Asbestos Control Bureau head, Angelo Garcia, III, of Future Environment Designs (FEDTC), and Mr. Bart Gallagher, of Enviroscience Consultants, Inc. on the proficiency day of PACNY's 24th Annual Environmental Conference in March 2020.  

Dan Crothers, AirBox, Veronica & Angelo Garcia, III, Matthew Desch, & Sheryl Esposito (FEDTC team)

As usual, the conference ended with a networking lunch. where we got to sit with our colleagues and discuss what has gone on over the last few days.  It's interesting to see the changing of the guard to a younger generation and we wish them luck and good fortune moving forward.  We are looking forward to seeing everyone next year!

Wednesday, May 03, 2023

PACNY's 26th Annual Environmental Conference - NYSDOL Entertains on the First Day and Then Drops a Bombshell on Second Day! - Part One.

Future Environment Designs Training Center (FEDTC) was a Sapphire Sponsor for the Professional Abatement Contractors of New York's (PACNY's) 26th Annual Environmental Conference held at Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Verona, New York.  The two-day event featured several presentations that were noteworthy and a presentation by Mr. David Ramos, Safety & Health Inspector from the NYS Department of Labor (NYSDOL), called "Common ICR 56 Violations" had the audience in stitches.  

Our booth in the Vendor Exhibit Hall

This year PACNY tried a new format for the morning & early afternoon sessions on the first day Thursday, March 16, 2023.  Side-by-side presentations (or two tracks though it was hard to discern if each track had a theme).  Because of some issues with Turning Stone the Onondaga Room was smaller than it was supposed to be.  The two-track presentations did require us to go back and forth between the two rooms to gauge the presentations for those following us on Twitter (#FEDTCPACNY).  It was interesting that the smaller Onondaga Room worked out for the presenters in that room since it seemed a smaller number of attendees still made the room seem fuller.  In the morning session, the presentation by Mr. Peter DeLucia, Director of Safety of the Riedman Companies and President of the Environmental Information Association (EIA)  "Exposure Assessments: The First Step In Compliance" had us again utterly confused with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) position on respirator use for asbestos.  Based on his presentation and reference material he presented OSHA does not recognize hoods or helmets even when their protection factor exceeds the required protection factor for the exposure assessment or monitoring.  This would imply then that individuals who cannot shave for whatever reason could not work in the asbestos industry.  Sounds like another blog post for the future.  Mr.Chris Alonge, Senior Engineer for the Dormitory Authority for the State of New York (DASNY), presented on "Managing Typical Regulated and Hazardous Wastes Generated on Abatement/Remediation Projects in NYS" a timely presentation considering all the talk lately about Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) in asbestos materials, like mastic and caulk, and how to handle universal wastes.  In the early afternoon sessions Lisa Rogers, President of Mycometer, presented "One Data Point Isn't Enough! The Fungal to Allergan Index, A New Diagnostic Concept" which discussed how air sampling using the Mycometer could assist in diagnosing mold issues strongly recommend those in the indoor air quality/mold industry look into this, and Brent Kynoch, Managing Director, EIA presented on "Environmental Trends Throughout the US" discussing the potential federal asbestos ban and different state regulations for environmental (lead, etc.) and mold regulations. 

Mr. Peter DeLucia, Director of Safety of the Riedman Companies and President of the Environmental Information Association (EIA)  "Exposure Assessments: The First Step In Compliance"

Other presenters and their topics included:

  • Ms. Donalea Maloney, OSHA Compliance Assistant Specialist - "All About OSHA, OSHA Update, and A Heat Stress Enforcement Case." 
  • Ms. Michelle McGowan, EMSL's VP Asbestos Division - "Bridging the Gap Between Field Sampling & Laboratory Analysis
  • Ms. Maddie Davis & Lauren Battagllia, Livingston Associates - "Engage to Retain: How Fostering Employee Engagement Can Help Reduce Turnover"
  • Alex Dell, Esq., Law Firm of Alex Dell, PLLC - "What Your Injured Employee Thinks Of You, Navigating the NYS Workers' Compensation Law and Related Benefits".  Saw his presentation at the North Country Chamber of Commerce's 2022 Business Expo and it provided good information and was very interesting.  A side note - Save the Date for the North Country Chamber of Commerce 2023 Business Expo & Conference is on Thursday, June 8, 2023, at SUNY Plattsburgh Angell Center.
  • Michael A. Pinto, CEO, Wonder Makers Environmental - "The Ins and Outs of the EIA's Mold Guide"
  • OneGroup - Brett Findlay, John Schmidtt, Michelle Namisniak, & Paul Coderre - "Where to Focus Your Efforts in Controlling Insurance Costs"
  • Nicole Henry - Business Development Representative, CompanyCam - "A Better Way to Survey; Gathering and Sharing Data More Effectively"
  • Jacob Hutton, Architectural Designer, CPL & Kevin Hutton, President & CEO, East Centers of NY - "Blueprint Reading 101: For Environmental Projects"
Ms. Michelle McGowan, EMSL's VP Asbestos Division - "Bridging the Gap Between Field Sampling & Laboratory Analysis

For the remainder of the afternoon, it returned to a one-track format finishing with Stefan A. Borovina, Esq., from Goldberg Segalla, presenting "How to Avoid OSHA Citations and Create a Safer Worksite".  Being prepared was a big part of his presentation on how to avoid OSHA citations including preparing your employees to be interviewed by OSHA.  

David Ramos, Safety & Health Inspector from the NYS Department of Labor (NYSDOL), called "Common ICR 56 Violations"

Mr. David Ramos' presentation "Common ICR 56 Violations".  Mr. Ramos' presentation showed us what some contractors and consultants try to get away with during asbestos abatement projects.  Some of the violations were so bad they were very funny.  That presentation put everyone in a good mood for the Happy Hour in the Mohawk Room - Presented by Aramsco.  Stay tuned for the second day!  

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Future Environment Designs Training Center Opens a Satellite Office in Rochester.

Future Environment Designs, Inc. (FEDTC) is happy to announce the opening of our satellite office in Rochester, New York.  This new location will be offering FEDTC's training courses that have an average Coursecheck rating of 4.8 out of 5 from over 1,800 reviewers.  Our satellite office will be working out of the Diversified Environmental Training location at 1700 Hudson Avenue, Suite B, Rochester, New York 14617.  This facility will be used for training only.  All recordkeeping will remain at our Corporate Office in Syosset.  We understand pricing is a little different in this area as compared to our usual training areas.  To help FEDTC get used to the area we will be offering a price match for the courses we offer in Monroe County.  So when registering click on the invoice button and send us a copy of a previous invoice you received from one of the local trainers and we will match it (for your efforts we will discount it 5%).

Training Room at Diversified Environmental Training

We are looking forward to the expansion of our services in Rochester, New York, including our At Your Convenience service.  The At Your Convenience service brings the training and/or respirator fit testing to your location.  All we need are five or more people and we're At Your Convenience!  Tired of traveling through rush hour traffic to get to your training center?  Tired of paying travel expenses for your employees for training?  Tired of the same old non-productive training classes?  Or are you just tired of the same old training?   If you have answered yes to any of the above questions, then you need to give us a call.  We can perform the training in your office. We provide a laptop, a projector, PowerPoint presentations, and a wireless device for internet access. You provide the seating and the blank wall (no blank wall, we’ll provide the screen). We do the rest.  We can do this training for any of the courses and services in our Course Offerings and Training Services Catalog.

At Your Convenience Training

In Rochester, FEDTC will continue to offer our One-Stop Service which allows employers to contact us or register online to:

  • Schedule staff development on asbestos, mold, or other safety and health regulations (see our Course Offerings and Training Services Catalog.),
  • Schedule respirator medical evaluations to comply with the OSHA respiratory protection standard 1910.134,
  • Order the proper respirator and filters for your staff, and
  • Schedule quantitative respirator fit testing to comply with the OSHA respiratory protection standard 1910.134, to be performed on the day of the class.

We provide this One-Stop Service making your occupational safety and health requirements simple and easy to complete on the same day as the training.  Contact us here or register online here.

Quantitative Respirator Fit Testing At Your Convenience or One-Stop Service

FEDTC is one of the few training providers that provide the FEDTC Dropbox folder (with hundreds of reference documents regarding indoor air quality, asbestos, lead, mold, etc.), we also provide our students with the negative air app (to help calculate the number of negative air units for a work area), our project monitor and air sampling technician courses include all three asbestos air sampling table (Federal, NYS, and NYC these can be purchased separately here) and for those considering opening your own business our book "Do As I Say, Not As I Did What I've Learned After 30 Years of Being in Business" discusses the four pillars of operating a successful business, you can purchase the book here.  We are thrilled to bring these services to Monroe County and specifically to the Rochester area.  See you in class! 

Monday, March 13, 2023

Counting Down to a Month of Conferences - First it's PACNY's Environmental Conference and Then EIA's!

The Professional Abatement Contractors of New York (PACNY) have announced the dates and schedule for their annual Environmental Conference on March 16th and 17th, 2023.  It will be held at the Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Verona, New York.  To register for the conference or sponsor the conference click here!  Also, this month is the Environmental Information Association's (EIA's) 2023 National Conference & Exhibition being held from March 25th to March 29th, 2023.  It is being held at Renaissance Nashville Hotel, Nashville, Tennessee.  To register for the conference or sponsor the conference click here!

PACNY 2022

Both of these conferences provide tons of information that helps keep our classes up-to-date.  We are looking forward to several presentations that should provide information about some current issues such as "Managing Typical Regulated and Hazardous Wastes Generated on Abatement/Remediation Projects in NYS", "Asbestos Building Inspectors - an Open Discussion", "Exposure Assessments", "Asbestos-Myth Busters", and "What Your Injured Employee Think of You, Navigating the NYS Worker's Compensation Law and Related Benefits" just to name a few.

EIA Conference 2022 in Phoenix, AZ

We will have a table at the PACNY conference and we will be tweeting the conference using the hashtag #FEDTCPACNY.  We will be selling our asbestos air sampling tables ($15 per table) and we will be selling and signing our book "Do As I Say, Not As I Did" ($15 per book) at the table.  Come by and say hello!  Sheryl Esposito will be womaning the booth as she has for the past couple of years.  Our co-host for Two Guys Talking Pumps, Dan Crothers, the International Sales Director of FermionX maker of the Airbox Sampling Pump, will also be attending the conference and is also a sponsor.  To know more about the Airbox sampling pumps see our YouTube video "Two Talking Pumps" below or visit him at his booth where he will have the Airbox sampling pump in person!  Looking forward to seeing you there.  

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Safety Training That Works: How FED Keeps Its Courses Fresh and Engaging by Natasha Serafimovska

At the beginning of last summer, Safety + Health Magazine released the 2022 Training Survey with some telling results.  Companies are tired of the same old safety training that is stale, repetitive, and ineffective.

When asked about their greatest challenges around worker safety training, companies identified these five common concerns as their biggest pain points:

  • Keeping training interesting, relevant, and up-to-date;
  • Offering consistent training across the organization;
  • Flexible schedule to accommodate various shift structures and work models;
  • Getting employees to complete their training and implement what they’ve learned;
  • Getting management buy-in about the importance of the training;

As a safety training provider who’s been around for over 30 years, this got us thinking at Future Environment Designs Training Center (FEDTC) about why that is the case.  Why do training providers struggle to keep safety training fresh and engaging at a time when there are so many tools and learning models at our disposal? 

Here, we share how FEDTC keeps our training fresh, engaging, and flexible.  We hope that this will help our current and new customers better assess our course offerings as well as give other training providers some insights into how they can improve their approach so that we can all raise the safety training standards and reduce injuries across the board.

Asbestos Handler 

Keeping Employees Interested and Engaged

Safety training is a regulatory requirement which means that most workers go through the same content each year.  Not only that, but safety content in itself can sometimes be a bit dry as there’s a lot about rules, regulations, and what workers should and shouldn’t do in different scenarios. 

That said, it doesn’t mean that safety training should be boring.  At FEDTC, for instance, we take great care in making our courses as engaging as possible.  At the beginning of the pandemic, we implemented Poll Everywhere, a polling tool that allows students to interact during virtual and in-person classes and helps the trainer check in with students as part of their presentation. 

This breaks up the one-way communication of the training format and gives students the desire to ask questions, comment, and give feedback.  All of this has significantly increased participation, and discussions, and has helped us make our courses much more interesting for our students.

Asbestos Operations & Maintenace

Offering Training That’s Consistent and Tailored to the Organization

If safety training is to work, it needs to be consistently delivered across the organization.  Likewise, the content needs to be adapted to the organization’s specific scenarios for it to resonate with the employees, as not all businesses face the same safety concerns.

At FEDTC, we review our training materials annually to determine if they need to be updated.  We also adjust our classes to meet specific work procedures and practices our clients use, such as working with asbestos cement pipe or asbestos electrical wire insulation.  All of this makes the training relevant and consistent with the working environment in which our clients operate. 

Not only that, but we regularly attend conferences such as Professional Abatement Contractors of New York (PACNY)Environmental Information Association (EIA), the American Council for Accreditated Certifications (ACAC), and others to stay abreast of the latest research, regulations, and standards in the industry. 

40-hour HAZWOPER 

Making Training Flexible

A large portion of our courses is available as both an in-person course and a virtual class which students can choose based on their location, work schedule, and availability.  We also run the same courses several times each month so that students have more options to choose from. 

When it comes to online training, we offer courses that are on-demand and students can take whenever they want or virtual instructor-led classes which can enrich the learning experience but do require student participation in a specific time. 

Mold Worker/Remediation/Supervisor/Assessor Course

Driving Course Completion and Compliance

For us, the training doesn’t end in the (virtual) classroom. Instead, we engage with learners post-training via email, text, or phone to answer questions and keep engagement high.  If we go back to the polling tool, we also use polls to keep the communication going in between courses if they take place on different days or months.

When it comes to compliance, we use polls at the beginning of our training sessions to see how much our learners remember from the previous year.  This helps us identify key areas we need to put extra focus on or update the content to make it more memorable and engaging.  This has dramatically improved learners’ knowledge retention and improved the overall outcomes of our training courses. 

At FEDTC, we understand that learners may need several touchpoints with the content in order to learn it. That’s why we try to provide as much and as diverse content as possible through our website, blog, and LinkedIn New York Asbestos Group.  For example, learners (and their employers) can use our Resource Page to get access to a plethora of recordings, papers, and conference presentations which are constantly updated via Dropbox.  We also provide a Negative Air Calculator for learners to get a better understanding of how negative pressure can keep work areas safe and lower contamination levels. 

OSHA 10-hour Construction Safety Course

Showing the Value of Safety Training

Finally, we don’t take things for granted.  We use Coursecheck, an online course feedback tool, to invite students' feedback and use that as a guide for improvement.  So far, we’ve received over 1500 online reviews with an overall 4.8 out of 5-star rating. 

Other than looking at what other people are saying, the best way to demonstrate the value of the training FEDTC provides is to give it a go.  FEDTC offers many short and refresher courses which you can use as a test drive to see if our methods suit your needs.  Once you’ve assessed the outcomes of those courses, we’d be happy to have a wider discussion about how we can deliver holistic safety training that is going to meet the needs of your particular business. 

OSHA 30-hour Construction Safety Course
The Bottom Line

Safety training may not be your favorite pastime activity, but its value in the workplace is indisputable. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that in 2020 there have been 4,764 work-related deaths where construction and transportation fatalities accounted for nearly half of those.  Construction, in fact, is cited as the industry with the highest rate of workplace fatalities in the United States.   

This highlights the importance of delivering quality and engaging workplace safety training.  The onus is both on training providers and employers to collaborate and come up with solutions that are relevant, engaging, and tailored to the circumstances workers face each and every day.

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