Knowledge is power. More to the point, knowledge of radio frequency energy is the surest way for a wireless worker to protect himself from being exposed to dangerous levels of RF radiation.

LBA Group, in cooperation with university educators, has developed the OSHA RF awareness course with certificate of completion so that wireless tower workers and other technicians can easily test their knowledge of RF safety. Their personal safety depends on them knowing of the health effects of RF and how to work safely in an RF environment.

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Working in Complex RF Environments Requires RF Awareness Training!

That environment, obviously, is only going to become more pervasive. At least a quarter million cellular telephone antennas are bouncing signals around the United States in 2011. Another 30,000 AM, FM and TV stations are emitting RF signals. And now, in-building DAS distributed antenna system proliferation is bringing concerns about RF exposure inside, too.

This RF clutter reflects the mushrooming demand for the wonderful technology of wireless communication. We are proud to be a part of the industry. Yet RF threats to health that probably seem abstract in theory are quite real to anyone working near wireless hardware. Wireless industry technicians and tower climbers are the first focus of concern because they are the most obvious people needing to be aware of RF risks, working directly with towers, stations and other transmission areas. Yet the presence of so many wireless towers and dishes places many other workers at risk as well—landscape personnel, roofers, sign installers, and building maintenance staff, to name a few.

LBA developed its online RF safety awareness course by calling upon its INARTE-certified RF engineers for the technical content, and consulting with educators to ensure the integrity of the online learning product. The resulting course is a fully interactive learning experience that is comprehensive in its content and intuitively accessible and usable, with a certificate for successful completion.

Knowledgeable technicians shouldn’t have any difficulty sitting down before a computer, brushing up on their knowledge by reviewing the preliminary quiz format, and quickly testing out. Workers needing to proceed more slowly can repeatedly log in and out of the course and complete it at their own pace. Content is introduced and recycled throughout the learning module so that when the comprehensive final exam is taken, course mastery and retention is assured.

LBA is offering the course at low group rates—just $110 a person. That is far less than some competing courses, and is priced such so that companies can economically train up entire crews. The certificate is renewable annually to keep workers compliant with OSHA practices. The course also features unique administrative reporting capabilities to aid safety compliance managers.

The RF safety awareness course was created through Wireless University® , which is our body of expertise and industry knowledge that is regularly fed by white papers, other technical publications, and interactions with technical academia. LBA Group has provided RF services to the industry since 1963 and along the way has acquired expertise and expert credentials.

The awareness course developer is Chris Horne, PhD, P.E., LBA’s chief technical officer who has years of RF and wireless industry experience. Course administrator is Byron Johnson, the contact person for companies interested in signing up their employees for the awareness training.

We urge industry safety managers to take advantage of this course certificate process to relieve OSHA compliance issues, and to ensure a high level of employee safety in the wireless workplace environment.

LBA also offers RF safety planning and program services, including site audits, industrial hazard evaluations, zoning support and RF personal monitors.

About The Author

LBA Group, Inc. has 50 years of experience in providing RF asset solutions and risk management for industrial and telecommunications infrastructure assets. The group is comprised of LBA Technology, a leading manufacturer and integrator of radio frequency systems, lightning protection, and EMC equipment for broadcast, industrial and government users worldwide; the professional engineering consultancy Lawrence Behr Associates, and LBA University, providing on-site and online professional training. The companies are based in Greenville, N.C., USA.

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