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.


June 7, 1991

Mr. Robert M. Underation
Wills Trucking Company
Director of Safety
3185 Columbia Avenue
Richfield, Ohio 44286

Dear Mr. Underation:

This is in response to your inquiry of February 27, 1990 and subsequent correspondence concerning the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response final rule (29 CFR 1910.120). Please accept my profound apology for the delay in this reply. The file containing your correspondence somehow found its way into the docket file where it has languished until most recently.

Your specific question relates to the training requirements for drivers hauling hazardous waste that do not interact with the waste other than to transport it. Employees are not covered by the standard if they are not exposed to health or safety hazards related to hazardous waste operations. It is unclear from your letter whether the driver's work activities meet this exclusion criteria. For your assistance, I have enclosed a brief summary of the 1910.120 training requirements.

There is an equivalent training clause in paragraph (e) of HAZWOPER which reads;


(9) Equivalent training. Employers who can show by documentation or certification that an employee's work experience and/or training has resulted in training equivalent to that training required in paragraphs (e)(1) through (e)(4) of this section shall not be required to provide the initial training requirements of those paragraphs to such employees.



Therefore, if covered by the standard, you may be able to certify some of your employees as "equivalently trained" because of the past training they have attended and their on-the-job training as described in your letter. However, all potentially exposed personnel entering the hazardous waste site would require 8 hours of refresher training on a yearly basis.

I hope this information is helpful. If you have any further questions please feel free to contact [the Office of Health Enforcement at (202) 693-2190].


Patricia K. Clark, Director
[Directorate of Enforcement Programs]
[Corrected 10/08/08]


February 27, 1990

Mr. Mike Moore
US Dept. of Labor
Occupational Safety & Health Administration
Division of Consumer Affairs
Room - N - 3647
200 Constitution Ave. NW
Washington, D.C. 20210

Dear Mr. Moore:

I am writing to request your interpretation on 29 CFR Part 1910.120 [Paragraph e] (Training).

Our Company has been involved in the transportation of solid hazardous waste in dump trailers since 1981 with an in house training program which covers manifesting, DOT rules & regs., respirator use & care, use of disposable clothing and eyewash use. The training also covers use of the Emergency Response Guide, placarding & labeling and use of our Company's Contingency spill plan. Our company also has annual Safety meetings to update training and refresh subjects.

In mid 1989 when I became aware of the 24 & 40 hour training requirements I called OSHA to ask if these training requirements applied to a trucking company who only transports the material and otherwise has only minimal if any exposure to the waste. I was told that this regulation was not applicable to transporters.

Recently a customer of ours asked if our drivers had been through the 24 hour training and this customer insisted that this was required of our company. I explained that our drivers remain in the vehicle in a hot zone while being loaded and they unload by dumping. We do not do emergency response cleanup work and OSHA had told me that transporters are not covered by this rule.

Would you please advise specifically if additional training is required and if so, what we must do to be in compliance. I await your response.

Thank you in advance.


Robert M. Underation
Director of Safety