November 22, 1994
||JAMES W. STANLEY|
DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY
||JOHN B. MILES, JR., DIRECTOR|
DIRECTORATE OF COMPLIANCE PROGRAMS
||BLOODBORNE PATHOGEN AND HAZWOPER-MEDIA COVERAGE|
This is in response to your request for information on whether OSHA has guidance relating to exposures of media employees to bloodborne pathogens and to situations covered under HAZWOPER.
There is not a booklet or outreach material that specifically addresses exposure of this precise kind. The question concerning members of the media and potential exposure on hazwoper sites has been addressed recently in a letter, which is available on CD-ROM. A copy is attached for your review.
The bloodborne pathogens standard would apply if there is a reasonable anticipation of skin, eye, or mucous membrane contact with blood. The employer is responsible for determining which job classifications or tasks may result in worker contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials. The standard relates to occupational exposure, regardless of where that exposure may occur, since risk of infection with bloodborne pathogens is dependent on the likelihood of exposure to blood or OPIM regardless of the particular job title or place of employment. If certain individuals in the media are routinely assigned the task of covering accidents scenes, the employer will need to evaluate the hazard and comply with the standard.