OSHA Updates 1998's HAZWOPER Standard

OSHA has issued a new directive, CPL 02-02-073--Inspection Procedures for 29 CFR 1910.120 and 1926.65, Paragraph (q): Emergency Response to Hazardous Substance Releases. The directive updates policies and provides clarification to ensure uniform enforcement of the provisions in the Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response standard that cover emergency response operations for releases of, or substantial threats of releases of, hazardous substances without regard to the location of the hazard. It revises CPL 02-02-059, issued April 24, 1998.

Enforcement procedures for compliance officers who need to conduct inspections of emergency response operations are included in the revision. It defines additional terms and expands on training requirements for emergency responders and other groups such as skilled support personnel. New guidance is provided on how HAZWOPER may apply to unique events such as terrorist attacks and addresses OSHA's role under the National Response Plan. OSHA says the update will assist other federal, state, and local personnel who have responsibilities under incident command systems and will assist in emergency response operations.

The instruction updates policy and provides clarification on the following issues:

  • HAZWOPER’s application to a terrorist incident response involving chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear materials.
  • OSHA's relationship with Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD-5), including discussion addressing the National Response Plan (NRP), the Worker Safety and Health Support Annex, and the National Incident Management System (NIMS).
  • OSHA's National Emergency Management Plan (NEMP) and Regional Emergency.
  • Management Plans (REMPs).
  • Definition of "First Receivers."
  • OSHA's "Best Practices for Hospital-Based First Receivers of Victims from Mass Casualty Incidents Involving the Release of Hazardous Substances."
  • Shelter-in-Place.
  • Damaged packages during shipping.
  • Skilled Support Personnel.
  • Emergency responder training levels.
  • Medical Surveillance for emergency responders.
  • Computer-based training.
  • Updates to citation guidelines.

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