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Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents
• Standard Number: 1910.120


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 http://www.osha.gov.

February 16, 2010

Ms. Paula MacRae
Oweis Engineering Inc.
100 East Hanover Ave., Suite 101
Cedar Knolls, NJ 07927

Dear Ms. MacRae:

Thank you for your November 2, 2009 letter to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). You have requested OSHA's interpretation of the trainer qualification requirements under the Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) standard, 29 CFR 1910.120. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation only of the requirements discussed and may not be applicable to any question not detailed in your original correspondence. The scenario you presented and our reply are below.

Scenario: There are employees at Oweis Engineering Inc. that have successfully completed 40 hour HAZWOPER training and required 8 hour refresher courses. These employees have extensive field experience and/or site specific health and safety training. You included the employees' resumes with your letter.

Question: Under 29 CFR 1910.120(e)(5), are these employees qualified to provide 40 hour HAZWOPER training and 8 hour refresher courses and subsequently certify employees as having completed the training and/or acquired the necessary experience?

Response: 29 CFR 1910.120(e)(5), Qualifications for trainers, reads as follows:

Trainers shall be qualified to instruct employees about the subject matter that is being presented in training. Such trainers shall have satisfactorily completed a training program for teaching the subjects they are expected to teach, or they shall have the academic credentials and instructional experience necessary for teaching the subjects. Instructors shall demonstrate competent instructional skills and knowledge of the applicable subject matter.

OSHA does not approve, certify, or endorse individual trainers or training programs. It is the responsibility of the employer to determine if the trainer(s) meets the requirements and has the necessary qualifications under HAZWOPER. As stated above, the standard identifies qualified trainers as those who have satisfactorily completed an instructional program ("train-the-trainer") or who otherwise have the academic credentials and instructional experience necessary to teach the applicable subject matter, i.e., a 40 hour HAZWOPER or 8 hour refresher training program. The trainer must be able to demonstrate proficiency and understanding of the material to be transmitted to trainees, e.g., hazard recognition, site-specific health and safety plans, site clean up engineering controls, and personal protective equipment, and have some instructional credentials or experience in training others. In addition, we note that trainers must continue to attend training in order to maintain their knowledge and skills base.

Thank you for your interest in occupational safety and health. We hope you find this information helpful. 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 http://www.osha.gov. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the Office of Health Enforcement at (202) 693-2190.

Sincerely,



Richard E. Fairfax, Director
Directorate of Enforcement Programs


Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents

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