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This topic covers OSHA’s safety and health standards designed to protect employees engaged in hazardous waste operations and emergency response activities to chemical spills or releases, or HAZWOPER.

OSHA’s HAZWOPER rules cover private-sector employees only. Public-sector employees are covered under identical standards administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In order to comply with the HAZWOPER rules, covered employers must develop a hazardous waste site management program. OSHA defines and provides standards for the numerous required components of hazardous waste site management programs, including written site-specific safety and health plans, training, medical surveillance, emergency response plans, engineering controls, PPE practices, and more.

For related resources and training materials, refer to the following topics:

Applies to News & White Papers
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Interpretations The applicability of HAZWOPER emergency response training requirements to workers who change leaking chlorine cylinders in a water treatment facility. (1910.120) 09/01/1994National
Interpretations Web-based HAZWOPER refresher training: hands-on training and trainer accessability. 10/20/1999National
Interpretations "Laboratory setting" and subsequent requirements for HAZWOPER [1910.120; 1910.1200] 11/15/1990National
Directives 06/10/1991 - STP 2-1.154C - Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response; Final Rule and Corrections 07/22/2003National
Directives 08/27/2007 - Inspection Procedures for 29 CFR 1910.120 and 1926.65, Paragraph (q): Emergency Response to Hazardous Substance Releaseserations and Emergency Response Standard, 29 CFR 1910.12 08/27/2007National
Directives 11/05/1990 - CPL 2-2.51 - Inspection Guidelines for Post-Emergency Response Operations Under CFR 1910.120 07/22/2003National
Directives 11/05/2003 - CPL 02-02-071 - Technical Enforcement and Assistance Guidelines for Hazardous Waste Site and RCRA Corrective Action Clean-up Operations (PDF) 11/05/2003National
Directives 12/30/1990 - CPL 2.35 CH-14 - Changes to the Regulatory and General Industry Standard Alleged Violation Elements (SAVES). 07/22/2003National
Interpretations 1910.120 - Clarification on first aid requirements for hazardous waste sites. 04/20/1993National
Regulations 29 CFR § 1910.120 Hazardous waste operations and emergency response  National
Interpretations Annual 8 hour refresher training for employees who work on hazardous waste sites. [1910.120] 03/06/1992National
Interpretations Applicability of compressed gas cylinder standard to workplaces subject to the Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Standard.(1910.120) 06/05/1992National
Interpretations Applicability of HAZWOPER standard to hazardous waste generators that are not conditionally exempt as small quantity generators. [1910.120; 1910.120(a)(2)(iii); 1910.120(p)(8)] 02/01/2006National
Interpretations Applicability of HAZWOPER to the clearing and rerailing of train cars after derailment situations.[1910.120; 1910.120(a)(2)(iv); 1910.120(q); 1910.120(q)(4); 1910.120(q)(6); 1910.120(q)(11)] 03/14/2012National
Interpretations Applicable regulations when handling waste material classified as "sludge exempt" in regards to the Hazard Communication and HAZWOPER standards [1910.120; 1910.120(a)(3); 1910.120(q); 1910.1200; 1910.1200(c)] 06/23/2005National
Interpretations Application of HAZWOPER (1910.120) to terrorist and weapons of mass destruction incident responses.[1910.120; 1910.120(q)] 11/24/2003National
Interpretations Application of HAZWOPER. 10/31/1997National
Interpretations Application of OSHA's Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) standard to employers of news media personnel who are covering emergency response incidents.(1910.120) 08/24/1994National
Questions & Answers Are all employees on the spill response team required to receive a pre-placement physical exam? Are physical exams requirement based on the level of HAZWOPER training employees received and type of response? 10/24/2013National
Questions & Answers Are we required to train our operations personnel who move hazardous chemicals that are stored in totes or 55 gallon drums with a fork-truck throughout our complex to the HAZWOPER standard and if we do what level do they need? 09/03/2014National
Interpretations Clarification of cleanup operation identified by a governmental body as an uncontrolled hazardous waste site. (1910.120) 03/25/1992National
Interpretations Clarification of HAZWOPER to a cleanup operation at a solid waste management unit. (1910.120) 07/14/1992National
Interpretations Clarification of OSHA requirements for trainer qualifications under the HAZWOPER standard. 09/19/2007National
Interpretations Clarification of requirements for 40 hours of training; Site specific training is required for employees who receive general training [1910.1200; 1910.120(e)(2)] 12/11/1987National
Interpretations Clarification of requirements for daily disposal of combustible wastes.[1910.106(e)(9)(iii)] 05/23/2000National
Interpretations Clarification of the requirements of the Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Standard. 10/31/1997National
Interpretations Clarification of training certification. [1910.120] 12/30/1992National
Interpretations Clarification of whether an employee can opt out of medical surveillance examinations under the HAZWOPER standard, 29 CFR 1910.120. 03/03/2008National
Interpretations Clarification on acceptability of National Environmental Trainers, Inc. (NET) interactive 40-hour training program. 02/04/2009National
Interpretations Clarification on HAZWOPER emergency response training requirements. (1910.120) 11/08/1994National
Interpretations Clarification on training for firefighters and HAZWOPER. [1910.120] 03/04/1993National
Interpretations Clarification on who must receive first responder awareness level training. (1910.120) 09/05/1995National
Interpretations Clarifications of the OSHA standards 1910.109 and 1910.119. 06/16/1994National
Interpretations Community response personnel with regards to HAZWOPER. (1910.120) 02/03/1995National
Interpretations Comparing medical evaluation requirements in the HAZWOPER, Respiratory protection, and Fire brigades standards. 01/15/1999National
Interpretations Criteria for and training of the hospital Safety Officer per the requirements of the HAZWOPER standard and as discussed in the "Best Practices for Hospital-based First Receivers" guidance document.[1910.120(q)(3); 1910.120(q)(6)(ii); 192 06/23/2005National
Checklists Decontamination Tools and Materials Checklist  National
Interpretations Definition of an emergency response. (1910.120) 06/29/1992National
Interpretations Emergency response in the trucking industry [1910.120; 1910.1200; 1910.120(q)(1); 1910.120(q)(3)(vii); 1910.120(q)(3)(iv); 1910.120(q)(6); 1910.38; 1910.1200(h)] 04/03/1991National
Interpretations Emergency response training necessary for hospital physicians/nurses that treat contaminated patients. 03/10/1999National
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