February 12, 1992
Mr. Jon Williams
Diamond Shamrock, Inc.
Health and Safety Department
Post Office Box 696,000
San Antonio, TX 78269-6000
Dear Mr. Williams:
This is in response to your letter
13, concerning the Occupational Safety
Health Administration's (OSHA) training
for hazardous waste operations.
The "Hazardous Waste Operations
Emergency Response" standard (HAZWOPER),
29 CFR 1910.120, states in paragraph
that "Trainers shall be qualified
instruct employees about the subject
that is being presented in training".
In addition, 29 CFR 1910.120(e)(5)
that the qualifications of the instructors
may be shown by academic degrees, completed
training courses and/or work experience.
At this time, OSHA does not have any
requirements to certify an instructor.
subjects that trainers should be able
convey to employees at hazardous waste
who need training are summarized in
(e), (p) and (q) of the HAZWOPER standard.
In addition, OSHA has proposed a standard
entitled "Training Programs for
Waste Operations," (29 CFR 1910.121)
which may offer guidance. Some of your
may be answered by the proposed rulemaking,
and when the standard becomes final
have to comply with parts of it. You
want to monitor the progress and anticipate
changes in your training and certification
programs. Please find a copy of the
of Proposed Rulemaking enclosed.
The training programs
required to be
under the proposed regulation are found
the Hazardous Waste Operations and
Response standard (HAZWOPER), 29 CFR
paragraphs (e) and (p). These training
are required for employees involved
operations required by a governmental
involving hazardous substances; corrective
actions involving cleanup operations
covered by the Resource Conservation
Recovery Act (RCRA); voluntary clean
at sites recognized by a governmental
and operations involving hazardous
that are conducted at RCRA permitted
storage and disposal (TSD) facilities.
1910.121 does not propose to accredit
programs for employees engaged in emergency
response activities, however, the decision
has not been made yet whether this
a requirement of the final standard.
The notice of proposed rulemaking does
address train the trainer courses directly,
however paragraph (c)(2)(B) of the
of proposed rulemaking states that
for accreditation are: "That [the
has competent staff and facilities
out the training properly." Outlines
of the courses that require accreditation
may be used as a guideline for developing
a train the trainer course.
The response above is OSHA's general
to your questions, however the following
responses are answers to your specific
Are Train the Trainer courses to be specific
for each type of hazardous waste operations
and/or emergency response operations? Does
this mean there are Train the Trainer courses
for HAZMAT trainers?
A Train the Trainer course must instruct
the trainer on the subjects to be covered
in the employee training course. It is unlikely
that one course would be able to incorporate
all of the topics required to be covered
for all hazardous waste operations and emergency
response operations. A more practical approach
would be to create separate courses. The
trainer must be able to demonstrate an understanding
of the material to be transmitted to employees.
Training courses for employees outlined in
the HAZWOPER standard
(and the proposed 29 CFR 1910.121, although
it may differ in the final rule) can be used as a foundation for train the
trainer courses, but more time should be
allowed for a more in depth explanation of
What is meant by academic credentials? Does
this mean a person with a degree in safety,
industrial hygiene, toxicology, environmental
science, and/or some other related degree?
Yes. Trainers may also show transcripts from
courses in safety and industrial hygiene
that are not necessarily part of a degree.
Would an engineer, not having a degree in
safety or industrial hygiene, and not having
attended an adequate number of safety and
hygiene courses, related to aspects concerning
hazardous wastes or materials, be considered
to have the proper academic credentials?
If so, what would an adequate number of safety
and hygiene courses be?
An adequate number of courses would vary
depending on the course and the engineer's
experience and training in safety and industrial
hygiene practices. As mentioned above, the
trainer must be able to demonstrate an understanding
of the material to be transmitted to trainees
and have some credentials or experience in
What are the minimum requirements for a trainer
in terms a layman would understand?
Please see the answer to question 1.
Does experience mean that a person that has
spill experience and a 40 hr. hazardous waste
and emergency response course can teach the
training course? If so, does this mean that
a person can teach all aspects of the hazardous
waste or emergency response course?
It seems unlikely that the person described
above would able to instruct employees on
all aspects of the hazardous waste or emergency
response course, and would feel confident
in answering any questions that employees
may have during their training. However,
such a person could probably teach some aspects
of the course.
The subpart (q)(7) states that trainers "shall
have satisfactorily completed a training
course for teaching the subjects they are
expected to teach, such as courses offered
by the U.S. Fire Academy, or they shall have
the training and/or academic credentials
and instructional experience necessary to
demonstrate competent instruction skills
and a good command of the subject matter
in the specific subject they are to teach."
I will assume the standard is speaking of
the Maryland Fire Academy when it states
the U.S. Fire Academy. Here again we are
speaking of training and/or academic credentials.
What exactly does this mean?
The Incident Command System and the training
levels within a HAZMAT team originated from
the National Fire Protection Association's
(NFPA) Standard for Professional Competence
of Responders to Hazardous Materials Incidents,
codified as NFPA 472. Emergency response
training given by the U.S. Fire Academy in
Emmittsburg, Maryland, would be identical
or similar to HAZWOPER training requirements
outlined in paragraph (q).
Where do you draw the line on who is and
who is not qualified to instruct these courses:
Does field experience in industry, pipelines,
or manufacturing with the occasional emergency
conditions qualify as experience with emergency
response or hazardous materials?
If the person described above actually responded
to an emergency and/or was trained in emergency
response their experience may suffice.
Would the normal safety training given to
employees in industry or manufacturing be
considered as experience for a HAZWOPER or
This may satisfy some of the training requirements,
although the instructor will probably need
additional, more thorough, training to convey
the information to employees.
If the trainer has a degree, but in a field
unrelated to the subject being taught, and
has satisfied some of the other requirements
for a trainer would that trainer be considered
qualified to teach that subject?
No. Trainers must be trained in the subject
they are expected to teach.
Should a trainer be certified [a] safety,
industrial hygiene, toxicologist, or other
professional with expertise in the subject
he/she is to teach. If the trainer is not
a certified professional and has attended
a Train the Trainer course in the subject
he is to teach but does not have significant
professional experience and/or experience
as an instructor in the subject areas of
safety, industrial hygiene, or other subjects
related to the subject to be taught; can
that instructor be considered competent?
Possibly, if the trainer has been sufficiently
trained he or she may teach the course to
employees. Professional experience is only
one of the criteria that may satisfy a trainer's
credentials to teach. Other criteria, such
as a train the trainer course, may also satisfy
What would OSHA consider significant professional
and/or training experience?
Any experience from which a person is able
to attain information, enabling them to later
draw on the experience while teaching. Field
experience in industry, pipelines, or manufacturing
may qualify as training experience if the
person is actively involved in the development
or implementation of site safety and health
plans, engineering controls, or emergency
My final question, what would OSHA use as
grounds to cite a company on their HAZWOPER
or HAZMAT training concerning the trainer's
OSHA would issue a citation if an OSHA compliance
officer found that a trainer did not have
academic qualifications, sufficient experience
or training in the material that trainer
For suggestions and assistance in developing
training programs you may want to contact:
the OSHA Training Institute at (708)
your OSHA Regional Office at (214)
or the OSHA Consultation Services for
Employer at (512) 440-3834.
We hope this information has helped
If you have any further questions regarding
current HAZWOPER training please feel
to contact MaryAnn Garrahan at (202)
Patricia Clark, Director
Directorate of Compliance Programs