OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at https://www.osha.gov.

October 28, 1987

Mr. Ernest J. Pratt
Building Services Manager
Jostens, Inc.
4119 South 67th Street
Omaha, Nebraska 68117

Dear Mr. Pratt:

This is in response to your letter of June 25, 1987, concerning your request for a variance from 29 CFR 1910.106(d)(4)(iv), and confirms your conversation with Mr. Joseph Bode of my staff.

As you are aware, a variance from 29 CFR 1910.106(d)(4)(iv) is not appropriate. However, compliance with provisions of the current NFPA 30-1984 standard of the National Fire Protection Association would be considered a de minimus violation of OSHA regulations and would result in no penalties or citations. De minimus violations are described by an enclosure.

Under the NFPA 30-1984 consensus standard, Section 4.4.16, enclosed, storage rooms in which Class I liquids are dispensed shall be equipped with continuous mechanical ventilation. In order to provide for energy savings in colder climates, a special exception is included which permits the recirculation of air under certain circumstances. A copy of the pertinent portion of the NFPA 30 is enclosed, along with a referenced portion of NFPA 91-1983.

Should you elect to modify your installation to conform to the requirements of NFPA 30-1984, it would be considered a de minimus violation of the OSHA standard and would be an acceptable alternative.

If we may be of further assistance, please contact us.


Thomas J. Shepich, Director
Directorate of Compliance Programs