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.

April 14, 1996

Mr. Roger L. Tynes
Manager Ergonomic and
Safety Engineering
Cambridge Industries, Inc.
2400 South Wabash
Centralia, IL., 62801

Dear Mr. Tynes:

Thank you for your letter of July 12, 1995 which requested a permanent variance from 29 CFR 1910.107(g)(5), in order to utilize n-butyl acetate as a solvent for the cleaning of electrostatic bells in your operation.

You indicated in your request for a variance that the paint spray used in your facility contains two solvents, MAK (methyl n-amine ketone) and toluene having flashpoints of 102 and 40 degrees F, respectively. In accordance with OSHA's standard, §1910.107(g)(5), you would be in compliance when you use any solvent for cleaning auxiliary equipment with a flash point of 40 degrees F or higher. Therefore, you do not need a variance to be in compliance, since you are using n-butyl acetate (flashpoint 83 degrees F).

Please note that in the future, if you should change your paint formulation, where the solvents in the paint may have flashpoints above 83 degrees F, then you would be required to select a solvent with a higher flashpoint than n-butyl acetate for the cleaning of auxiliary equipment.

Thank you for your inquiry. If you need further assistance, please call Alcmene Haloftis of my staff at 202-219-8031.


John B. Miles, Jr., Director
Directorate of Compliance Programs