D2000 Safety has recently entered into a partnership with the Initial Response Institute to bring effective HAZWOPER training to our clients. The Initial Response Institute (IRI) has been providing this type of training for decades and the company's founder, David Bargabos, has recently joined D2000 Safety as our Director of Education.
This article is intended to provide readers with a basic understanding of HAZWOPER regulations. If you need a higher level of training, consider attending our HAZWOPER Awareness class in Medford on April 9, 2019.
Hazardous waste operations (HAZWOPER) can be a complicated subject, given that it includes both OSHA and EPA requirements.
In general, we can divide HAZWOPER activities into two broad categories:
1) Those that occur at EPA regulated sites such as treatment, storage and disposal facilities. This also covers sites that are known to be contaminated and where the cleanup activities are performed by workers or volunteers.
2) Spill response activities that can occur anywhere that hazardous materials are used or stored.
Our training focuses on the needs of employees who are tasked with responding to spills. In other words, they are members of the location's hazardous materials response team. OSHA defines these teams as:
"An organized group of employees, designated by the employer, who are expected to perform work to handle and control actual or potential leaks or spills of hazardous substances requiring possible close approach to the substance. The team members perform responses to releases or potential releases of hazardous substances for the purpose of control or stabilization of the incident. A HAZMAT team is not a fire brigade nor is a typical fire brigade a HAZMAT team. A HAZMAT team, however, may be a separate component of a fire brigade or fire department. "
The precise activities of these teams will vary from location to location, but there is a basic foundation of knowledge that team members and facility management need to ensure that spill responses do not expose employees to uncontrolled hazards. This level of training is commonly refered to as: "HAZWOPER Awareness."
Specific outcomes of this class include:
Understanding the risks associated with hazardous substances and the possible outcomes associated with emergency releases.
- Identifying the presence of hazardous substances in an emergency.
- Defining the role(s) of the first responder in the employer’s response plan, including site security and control.
- Understanding and following the recommendations in the North American Emergency Response Guidebook.
- Being able to identify the need for additional resources and to make appropriate notifications to the communication center(s).
Our 8-hour open enrollment HAZWOPER Awareness class is designed to achieve these outcomes. After completing this class, students should be able to make informed decisions regarding their facility's ability to properly respond to releases without exposing employees to hazards.
If it appears as though additional training is needed, D2000 Safety would be glad to discuss these needs to see if we would be a good fit for your situation.