When thinking of HAZWOPER, workers in chemical-protective suits spring to mind. Hazardous substances (including hazardous waste, hazardous materials, biological agents, and certain EPA-regulated substances) can threaten worker safety and health. Because of the seriousness of the hazards, OSHA issued its HAZWOPER Standard to protect workers in hazardous waste cleanup and emergency response operations.
As part of those protections, initial and annual refresher training must be provided based on the role of the worker. Look to J. J. Keller to help you train your hazardous waste cleanup workers and your emergency responders. Whether you are in manufacturing, warehousing, retail, construction, transportation, or other industries, we can help you with your HAZWOPER training needs.
HAZWOPER: Emergency Response Initial Training
The minutes immediately following a hazardous substance release are critical to ensuring everyone's safety. That's why OSHA requires emergency response training if your employees are expected to assist in the handling of an uncontrolled release of a hazardous substance. The training level (awareness, operations or technician) must be based on the functions and duties your responders will be expected to perform.
OSHA has said that online training can serve as a valuable training tool in the context of an overall training program. To meet the intent of OSHA's HAZWOPER Standard, the employer must supplement any online curriculum with a qualified trainer, site-specific elements, hands-on exercises, and an opportunity for workers to ask questions. Emergency response training must also be tailored to the workers' assigned duties.
First responders at the awareness level are individuals who are likely to witness or discover a hazardous substance release and who have been trained to initiate an emergency response sequence by notifying the proper authorities of the release. They would take no further action beyond notifying the authorities of the release.
There are 3 online courses included within this curriculum:
First responders at the operations level are individuals who respond to releases or potential releases of hazardous substances as part of the initial response effort for the purpose of protecting nearby persons, property, or the environment from the effects of the release.
They are trained to respond in a defensive fashion without actually trying to stop the release. Their function is to contain the release from a safe distance, keep it from spreading, and prevent exposures.
There are 6 online courses included within this curriculum:
First responders at the hazmat technician level are individuals who respond to releases or potential releases for the purpose of stopping the release. They assume a more aggressive role than a first responder at the operations level in that they will approach the point of release in order to plug, patch, or otherwise stop the release of a hazardous substance.
There are 11 online courses included within this curriculum:
HAZWOPER: Waste Site Worker Initial Training
According to OSHA, a "cleanup operation" is an operation where hazardous substances are removed, contained, incinerated, neutralized, stabilized, cleared-up, or in any other manner processed or handled with the goal of making the site safer for people or the environment.
All employees working on sites with cleanup operations covered by the HAZWOPER Standard must receive training before they engage in hazardous waste operations that could expose them to hazardous substances, health hazards, or safety hazards.
24-Hour Initial Training:
Routine or Non-Routine Waste Site Workers
The following worker types must receive 24-hour initial training and at least one day of actual field experience under the direct supervision of a trained, experienced supervisor, per 29 CFR 1910.120(e):
- Routine site workers: Workers regularly onsite who work in areas that have been monitored and fully characterized indicating that exposures are under permissible exposure limits (PELs) and published exposure limits where respirators are not necessary, and the characterization indicates that there are no health hazards or the possibility of an emergency developing.
- Non-routine site workers: Workers onsite only occasionally for a specific limited task (such as, but not limited to, groundwater monitoring, land surveying, or geo-physical surveying) and who are unlikely to be exposed over PELs and published exposure limits.
There are 12 online courses included within this curriculum:
16-Hour Advancement Training:
Waste Site Workers
If a fully trained routine or non-routine site worker becomes a general site worker OR is required to wear a respirator, then he or she must have:
- An additional 16 hours of initial off-site training, and
- Two more days of actual field experience.
The additional training and field experience brings the total initial training and experience durations up to those mandated for a general site worker, which is 40 hours initial off-site training and three days field experience.
There are 8 online courses included within this curriculum:
40-Hour Initial Training:
General Waste Site Workers
General waste site workers (such as equipment operators, general laborers and supervisory personnel) engaged in hazardous substance removal or other activities that expose or potentially expose workers to hazardous substances and health hazards must receive a minimum of 40 hours of initial instruction off the site, and a minimum of three days actual field experience under the direct supervision of a trained, experienced supervisor.
There are 20 online courses included within this curriculum:
HAZWOPER: Refresher Training
After initial training, emergency responders must receive annual refresher training or demonstrate competency at least annually, according to 29 CFR 1910.120(q)(8) for general industry or 29 CFR 1926.65(q)(8) for construction. While a refresher training duration is not specified in the regulation, annual refresher training must be of "sufficient content and duration" to maintain a responder's competencies. The employer must make a statement of the training or competency, and if a statement of competency is made, the employer must keep a record of the methodology used to demonstrate competency.
Annual Refresher Training: Emergency Responders
Emergency responders are individuals who participate, or are expected to participate, in emergency response operations for releases of, or substantial threats of releases of, hazardous substances. These responders include the first responder awareness level, first responder operations level, hazardous materials technician, hazardous materials specialist, and on-scene incident commander.
There are 5 online courses included within this curriculum:
8-Hour Refresher Training: Waste Site Workers
Anyone who enters a hazardous waste cleanup site, even occasionally, must have Initial and Annual HAZWOPER Refresher Training, unless it can be shown that they will not have exposure or the reasonable possibility for exposure to safety or health hazards. Refreshing employees on the potential hazards they may encounter and the protective measures they can take will help them perform their work with minimal risk.