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.

January 14, 1997

Mr. Gene Kostka
Hoechst Celanese
Post Office Box 58190
Houston, Texas 77258-8190

Dear Mr. Kostka:

This is in response to your request for an interpretation of the training provisions of OSHA's Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) standard (29 CFR 1910.120). Specifically, you requested clarification as to whether certain employees entering a treatment, storage and disposal (TSD) facility would require training under paragraph (p)(7) of the HAZWOPER standard. You indicated that these employees would be required to enter the TSD facility once a month or once every other month to repair and maintain the fire protection systems. You also indicated that the employees would not be involved with any equipment containing hazardous waste and would be required to evacuate the site in an emergency situation.

Paragraph (a)(1) of the HAZWOPER standard states that operations involving hazardous wastes that are conducted at RCRA-permitted TSD facilities are covered unless the employer can demonstrate that the operation does not involve employee exposure or the reasonable possibility for exposure to safety or health hazards. Thus, workers who are not potentially exposed to hazardous waste in a TSD facility are not covered by the standard and do not require the 24-hour training specified in paragraph (p)(7) of the standard. However, in such cases, you must provide the workers with appropriate emergency response training as specified in paragraph (p)(8) of the standard. Alternatively, in cases where your employees are directed to immediately evacuate the area in the event of an emergency, you must provide training on evacuation procedures as required by 29 CFR 1910.38(a).

We hope that this letter clarifies your concerns regarding the training requirements under paragraph (p) of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) HAZWOPER standard. If you have additional questions please your the contact this office at (202) 219-8036.


Ruth McCully, Director
Office of Health Compliance Assistance