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Show Your Team the Basics of SST Cards

Published on: March 2, 2021

Since the signing of Local Law 196 in 2017, Site Safety Training Cards have been mandatory for New York City construction workers on major job sites. As of March 1 of this year, the deadline to obtain one will have passed. If your team has not completed the required training outline in our previous blog, they no doubt soon will. But once your team members have their cards, what will they need to know about them?

The Site Safety Training card, or SST card, provides information about the training backgrounds of individual construction workers in New York City. Besides the basics, such as the card holder’s name and photograph, SST cards provide: a scannable QR code for training validation, an ID number, the card issue date, an expiration date, and an ID number for the card provider.

SST cards are valid for five years, at which point they expire. However, they are renewed upon completion of eight hours of DOB-approved Fall Prevention and Supported Scaffold User training, which must be completed within the one year period prior to submitting the renewal application.

Although SST cards are issued to individual workers, these workers are not issued violations for noncompliance. Rather, the permit holder employing them is fully responsible for ensuring their workers are properly trained and compliant with the local law. If a job site is found to be noncompliant, the violation could carry a civil penalty as high as $5,000 per untrained worker. An employer might be able to mitigate these costs by sponsoring training. The permit holder could also be penalized for failing to maintain a record that demonstrates that all workers are properly trained, up to $2,500.

There are a few individuals who are exempt from obtaining an SST card. They include: delivery persons, flag persons, professional engineers, registered architects, department-licensees and department-registrants. However, anyone who falls under one of those roles but still serves as Site Safety Manager, Site Safety Coordinator, Concrete Safety Manager, or Construction Superintendent, is still required to receive appropriate training.

Forty hours of training now can mean years of safety for our entire industry. Once trained, it is important that all team members carry their cards so that they can verify that they are qualified for the work they are performing. This allows work to continue efficiently and safely.