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• Publication Date: 12/08/2011
• Publication Type: Notice
• Fed Register #: 76: 76766-76768
• Standard Number: 1910.1017
• Title: Standard on Vinyl Chloride; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements

[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 236 (Thursday, December 8, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 76766-76768]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-31492]


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DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

[Docket No. OSHA-2011-0196]


Standard on Vinyl Chloride; Extension of the Office of Management 
and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) 
Requirements

AGENCY: Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

ACTION: Request for public comments.

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SUMMARY: OSHA solicits public comments concerning its proposal to 
extend the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) approval of the 
information collection requirements specified in the Standard on Vinyl 
Chloride (29 CFR 1910.1017).

DATES: Comments must be submitted (postmarked, sent, or received) by 
February 6, 2012.

ADDRESSES: 
    Electronically: You may submit comments and attachments 
electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal. Follow the instructions online for submitting 
comments.
    Facsimile: If your comments, including attachments, are not longer 
than 10 pages, you may fax them to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-
1648.
    Mail, hand delivery, express mail, messenger, or courier service: 
When using this method, you must submit your comments and attachments 
to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket No. OSHA-2011-0196, Occupational 
Safety and Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-
2625, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210. Deliveries 
(hand, express mail, messenger, and courier service) are accepted 
during the Department of Labor's and Docket Office's normal business 
hours, 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.t.
    Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and OSHA 
docket number (OSHA-2011-0196) for the Information Collection Request 
(ICR). All comments, including any personal information you provide, 
are placed in the public docket without change, and may be made 
available online at http://www.regulations.gov. For further information 
on submitting comments see the "Public Participation" heading in the 
section of this notice titled SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
    Docket: To read or download comments or other material in the 
docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov or the OSHA Docket Office at 
the address above. All documents in the docket (including this Federal 
Register notice) are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index; 
however, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly 
available to read or download from the Web site. All submissions, 
including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and 
copying at the OSHA Docket Office. You also may contact Theda Kenney at 
the address below to obtain a copy of the ICR.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Theda Kenney, Directorate of Standards 
and Guidance, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-3609, 200 
Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-
2222.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce 
paperwork and respondent (i.e., employer) burden, conducts a 
preclearance consultation program to provide the public with an 
opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing information 
collection requirements in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act 
of 1995 (PRA 95) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). This program ensures that 
information is in the desired format, reporting burden (time and costs) 
is minimal, collection instruments are clearly understood, and OSHA's 
estimate of the information collection burden is accurate. The 
Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (the OSH Act) (29 U.S.C. 651 
et seq.) authorizes information collection by employers as necessary or 
appropriate for enforcement of the OSH Act or for developing 
information regarding the causes and prevention of occupational 
injuries, illnesses, and accidents (29 U.S.C. 657). The OSH Act also 
requires that OSHA obtain such information with minimum burden upon 
employers, especially those operating small businesses, and to reduce, 
to the maximum extent feasible, unnecessary duplication of efforts in 
obtaining information (29 U.S.C. 657).
    The Standard specifies a number of paperwork requirements. The 
following is a brief description of the collection of information 
requirements contained in the Vinyl Chloride (VC) Standard.

(A) Exposure Monitoring (Sec.  1910.1017(d) and Sec.  1910.1017(n))

    Paragraph 1910.1017(d)(2) requires employers to conduct exposure 
monitoring at least quarterly if the results show that worker exposures 
are above the permissible exposure limit (PEL), while those exposed at 
or above the action level (AL) must be monitored no less than 
semiannually. Paragraph (d)(3) requires that employers perform 
additional monitoring whenever there has been a change in VC 
production, processes or control that may result in an increase in the 
release of VC.

    Paragraph 1910.1017(n) requires employers to inform each worker of 
their exposure-monitoring results within 15 working days after the 
employer receives these results. Employers may notify workers either 
individually in writing or by posting the monitoring results in an 
appropriate location that is accessible to the workers. In addition, if 
the exposure-monitoring results show that a worker's exposure exceeds 
the PEL, the employer must inform the exposed worker of the corrective 
action the employer is taking to prevent such overexposure.

(B) Written Compliance Plan (Sec. Sec.  1910.1017(f)(2) and (f)(3))

    Paragraph (f)(2) requires employers whose engineering and work 
practice controls cannot sufficiently reduce worker VC exposures to a 
level at or below the PEL to develop and implement a plan for doing so. 
Paragraph (f)(3) requires employers to develop this written plan and 
provide it upon request to OSHA for examination and copying. These 
plans must be updated annually.

(C) Respiratory Program (Sec.  1910.1017(g)(2))

    When respirators are required, the employer must establish a 
respiratory protection program in accordance with 1910.134, paragraphs 
(b) through (d) (except (d)(1)(iii) and (d)(3)(iii)(B)(1) and (2)) and 
(f) through (m). Paragraph 1910.134(c) requires the employer to develop 
and implement a written respiratory protection program with worksite-
specific procedures and elements for respirator use. The purpose of 
these requirements is to ensure that employers establish a standardized 
procedure for selecting, using, and maintaining respirators for each 
workplace where respirators will be used. Developing written procedures 
ensures that employers develop a respirator program that meets the 
needs of their workers.

(D) Emergency Plan (Sec.  1910.1017(i))

    Employers must develop a written operational plan for dealing with 
emergencies; the plan must address the storage, handling, and use of VC 
as a liquid or compressed gas. In the event of an emergency, 
appropriate elements of the plan must be implemented. Emergency plans 
must maximize workers' personal protection and minimize the hazards of 
an emergency.

(E) Medical Surveillance (Sec.  1910.1017(k))

    Paragraph (k) requires employers to develop a medical surveillance 
program for workers exposed to VC in excess of the Action Level. 
Examinations must be provided in accordance with this paragraph at 
least annually. Employers must also obtain, and provide to each worker, 
a copy of a physician's statement regarding the worker's suitability 
for continued exposure to VC, including use of protective equipment and 
respirators, if appropriate.

(F) Communication of VC Hazards (Sec.  1910.1017(l))

    Under paragraph 1910.1017(l)(2), the employer must post warning 
signs outside regulated areas and areas containing hazardous 
operations, or where emergency conditions exist. Posting warning signs 
serves to warn workers that they are entering a hazardous area. Such 
signs warn workers that entry is permitted only if they are authorized 
to do so, and there is a specific need to enter the area. Warning signs 
also supplement the training workers receive under this standard.

(G) Recordkeeping (Sec.  1910.1017(m))

    Employers must maintain worker exposure and medical records. 
Medical and monitoring records are maintained principally for worker 
access, but are designed to provide valuable information to both 
workers and employers. The medical and monitoring records required by 
this standard will aid workers and their physicians in determining 
whether or not treatment or other interventions are needed for VC 
exposure. The information also will enable employers to better ensure 
that workers are not being overexposed; such information may alert the 
employer that steps must be taken to reduce VC exposures.
    Exposure records must be maintained for at least 30 years, and 
medical records must be kept for the duration of employment plus 20 
years, or for a total of 30 years, whichever is longer. Records must be 
kept for extended periods because of the long latency period associated 
with VC-related carcinogenesis (i.e., cancer). Cancer often cannot be 
detected until 20 or more years after the first exposure to VC.

II. Special Issues for Comment

    OSHA has a particular interest in comments on the following issues:
     Whether the proposed information collection requirements 
are necessary for the proper performance of the Agency's functions to 
protect workers, including whether the information is useful;
     The accuracy of OSHA's estimate of the burden (time and 
costs) of the information collection requirements, including the 
validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
     The quality, utility and clarity of the information 
collected; and
     Ways to minimize the burden on employers who must comply; 
for example, by using automated or other technological information 
collection and transmission techniques.

III. Proposed Actions

    The Agency is requesting an adjustment decrease in burden hours 
from 711 to 549 hours, a 162 burden hour reduction. The reduction is a 
result of fewer VC and Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) establishments subject 
to reporting requirements under this standard. There is also a decrease 
in total annual cost from $48,928 to $40,888 (a decrease of $8,040). 
This decrease is a result of a decrease in the estimated number of 
workers to be exposed above to VC and PVC facilities is approximately 
3,968, a decrease of 1,368 workers. The currently approved ICR 
estimates a total of 32 establishments. This proposed ICR estimates a 
total of 26 establishments. The Agency will summarize any comments 
submitted in response to this notice and will include this summary in 
its request to OMB.
    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.
    Title: Standard on Vinyl Chloride (29 CFR 1910.1017).
    OMB Number: 1218-0010.
    Affected Public: Business or other for-profits.
    Number of Respondents: 26.
    Frequency: On occasion; annually.
    Total Responses: 925.
    Average Time per Response: Varies from 5 minutes (.08 hour) for 
employers to maintain records to 12 hours for employers to update their 
compliance plans.
    Estimated Total Burden Hours: 549.
    Estimated Cost (Operation and Maintenance): $40,888

IV. Public Participation--Submission of Comments on This Notice and 
Internet Access to Comments and Submissions

    You may submit comments in response to this document as follows: 
(1) electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal; (2) by facsimile (fax); or (3) by hard copy. All 
comments, attachments, and other material must identify the Agency name 
and the OSHA docket number for this ICR (Docket No. OSHA-2011-0196). 
You may supplement electronic submissions by uploading document files 
electronically. If you wish to mail additional materials in reference to 
an electronic or a facsimile submission, you must submit them to the OSHA 
Docket Office (see the section of this notice titled ADDRESSES). The additional 
materials must clearly identify your electronic comments by your name, date, 
and OSHA docket number, so the Agency can attach them to your comments.
    Because of security procedures, the use of regular mail may cause a 
significant delay in the receipt of comments. For information about 
security procedures concerning the delivery of materials by hand, 
express delivery, messenger, or courier service, please contact the 
OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-2350, (TTY (877) 889-5627).
    Comments and submissions are posted without change at http://www.regulations.gov. 
Therefore, OSHA cautions commenters about submitting personal information, such as 
Social Security numbers and dates of birth. Although all submissions are listed in 
the http://www.regulations.gov index, some information (e.g., copyrighted 
material) is not publicly available to read or download through this 
Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are 
available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. 
Information on using the http://www.regulations.gov Web site to submit 
comments and access the docket is available at the Web site's "User 
Tips" link. Contact the OSHA Docket Office for information about 
materials not available through the Web site, and for assistance in 
using the Internet to locate docket submissions.

V. Authority and Signature

    David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for 
Occupational Safety and Health, directed the preparation of this 
notice. The authority for this notice is the Paperwork Reduction Act of 
1995 (44 U.S.C. 3506 et seq.) and Secretary of Labor's Order No. 4-2010 
(75 FR 55355).

    Signed at Washington, DC on December 2, 2011.
David Michaels,
Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.
[FR Doc. 2011-31492 Filed 12-7-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-26-P

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