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Personal Protection - Storage, Maintenance and Care (Sep/Oct-12)
Machine Safeguarding (Jul/Aug-12)
Is Your Lockout & Tagout Program Working? (May/Jun-12)
Getting Familiar with OSHA (Mar/Apr-12)
Is Your Piping Systems Properly Marked? (Jan/Feb-12)
Accident Prevention, Does Your Company Have An Effective Program? (Nov/Dec-11)
Defining FR – Flame Resistant Fabrics (Jul/Aug-11)
OSHA's Flammable & Combustible Liquids (May/Jun-11)
Safety & Health Program Check-up (Jan/Feb-11)
OSHA Is My Friend (Nov/Dec-10)
OSHA Standard for Control of Hazardous Energy Sources? (Sep/Oct-10)
Lockout/Tagout Program (Jul/Aug-10)
Safe Handling of Compressed Gas Cylinders (May/Jun-10)
What You Should Know about OSHA and Plastic Working Machinery (Mar/Apr-10)
Fasten Those Forklift Seat Belts (Jan/Feb-10)
My Back Hurts (Nov/Dec-09)
Fall Protection Program (Sep/Oct-09)
Accident Prevention & Investigation (Jul/Aug-09)
OSHA & Machine Safeguarding (May/Jun-09)
Carbon Monoxide Hazards (Mar/Apr-09)
OSHA Electrical Safety and Training (Jan/Feb-09)
Free Forklift ANSI Standards (Nov/Dec-08)
Worksite Fire Emergencies (Sep/Oct-08)
Machine Safety (Jul/Aug-08)
Ladder Safety (May/Jun-08)
Is Your Company on OSHA's Hit List?
OSHA Notifies Workplaces with High Injury and Illness Rates (Mar/Apr-08)
Safety Means . . . Never Having to Say You're Sorry (Jan/Feb-08)
Flammables and Combustible Liquids (Nov/Dec-07)
Designing-In Safety NOT Retrofitting Safety (Sep/Oct-07)
Back Safety and Lifting (Jul/Aug-07)
Machine Guarding (May/Jun-07)
Your Hearing Keep it for a Lifetime (Mar/Apr-07)
Light Up the Holidays the Safe Way (Nov/Dec-06)
Would You Risk Your Employee's Life? (Sep/Oct-06)
How to Control Workers' Compensation Costs (Jul/Aug-06)
Compliance with 70E Electrical Standards (May/Jun-06)
OSHA Is on the Move (Mar/Apr-06)
Workplace Violence (Jan/Feb-06)
The Aging Workforce (Nov/Dec-05)
The Safety Paradox (Sep/Oct-05)
Machine Guarding (Jul/Aug-05)
Effective Risk Management (May/Jun-05)
Safety Is Everyone's Business (Mar/Apr-05)
New Year's Resolution Safety (Jan/Feb-05)
Safe Driving (Nov/Dec-04)
Terror In The Skies Revisited (Sep/Oct-04)
How They Got Hurt (Jul/Aug-04)
In-Plant Air Monitoring & Analysis (May/Jun-04)
Safety on the Job and Complying with the Americans With Disabilities Act (Mar/Apr-04)
Link to Article Archive (Jan/Feb-04)
A Supervisor's Duty (Nov/Dec-03)
Machine Safety – Are Your Machines Safe to Operate? (Sep/Oct-03)
Summer is Here (Jul/Aug-03)
Working Safely On Powered Industrial Trucks (Forklifts) (May/Jun-03)
Does Your Safety and Health Workplace Program Contain All of These Elements? (Mar/Apr-03)
Methylene Chloride (Jan/Feb-03)
Safety Signs & Labels - Does Your Facility Comply? (Nov/Dec-02)
Indoor Air Quality (Sep/Oct-02)
When OSHA Arrives (Jul/Aug-02)
Facts About the Occupation Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) (May/Jun-02)
Workplace Fire Safety (Mar/Apr-02)
OSHA 300 Form (Jan/Feb-02)
Preparing for Disaster (Nov/Dec-01)
How Much is a Life Worth? (Sep/Oct-01)
Material Handling Programs (Jul/Aug-01)
It's Up To You To Protect Your Skin (May/Jun-01)
When You’ve Been Handed the Responsibility for Safety (Mar/Apr-01)
A Fresh Look at Machine Safeguarding (Jan/Feb-01)
Safe Work Habits (Nov/Dec-00)
The Importance of Material Safety Data Sheets (Sep/Oct-00)
Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (Jul/Aug-00)
Lockout/Tagout Program (May/Jun-00)
OSHA Violations, Citations and Penalties for 1998 (Mar/Apr-00)
Erogonomics and Machinery Safeguarding (Jan/Feb-00)
General Machine Principles (Nov/Dec-99)
SAFETY SOLUTIONS
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SAFETY SOLUTIONS: Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response

Protecting workers from hazardous materials is one of the biggest safety challenges. To help meet this need, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Environmental Protection Agency A(EPA) have issued a joint standard on Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response - commonly called HAZWOPER.

Hazardous materials are substances that pose a serious threat to human health or the environment if they are improperly managed. Certain materials are listed by name as hazardous under laws passed by the EPA, OSHA and the Department of Transportation (DOT).

There are 9 classes of hazardous materials as listed by the Department of Transportation:

Class 1 - Explosives

Class 2 - Gases

Class 3 - Flammable Liquids

Class 4 - Flammable Solids, Spontaneously Combustible Materials and materials that are dangerous when wet.

Class 5 - Oxidizers and Organic Peroxides

Class 6 - Poisonous and Etiologic Materials

Class 7 - Radioactive Materials

Class 8 - Corrosives

Class 9 - Miscellaneous Hazardous Materials

The standard covers hazardous waste operations and emergency response that "involve employee exposure or the reasonable possibility for employee exposure to safety or health hazards."

Safety hazards include physical dangers such as fire or explosion.

Health hazards are chemicals and disease organisms that can cause illness, injury or death.

The HAZWOPER Standard requires employees who may be exposed to hazardous materials and/or hazardous waste operations to be trained.

Training shall be based on the duties and function to be performed by each responder of an emergency response organization. As a minimum first responders must be trained in the following areas:

  • An understanding of what hazardous substances are, and the risks associated with then in an incident.

  • An understanding of the potential outcomes associated with an emergency created when hazardous substances are present.

  • The ability to recognize the presence of hazardous substances in an emergency.

  • The ability to identify hazardous substances if possible.

  • An understanding of the role of the first responder awareness individual in the employer's emergency response plan including site security.

For valuable information on the dangers of any hazardous material the MSDS (material safety data sheet) should be checked before an emergency occurs.

All employees of your company should be familiar with the company emergency response plan. Emergency response plans must be pre-approved by local authorities when outside help, such as the fire department would be called to the scene.

Proper response to an emergency will help save lives and prevent damage to property and the environment.

For more information, click on the Authors Biography at the top of this page.

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