Proper training is critical to ensuring that your business runs smoothly and that everyone at your company is on the same page. This is true in every industry, but it takes on an increased importance when it comes to facilities that handle hazardous materials. Employees who are expected to work with hazardous materials every day (or hazmat employees) must have the proper training according to federal regulations. Not providing this training to them can cost your business in EPA and DOT fines, not to mention putting your hazmat employees at serious risk of injury.
Defining Hazmat Employees
According to federal guidelines, any employee who does any of the follow tasks is considered a hazmat employee and needs to undergo training.
- Unloading, loading, or handling hazardous materials
- Responsible for the safe transport of hazardous materials
- Preparing hazardous materials for safe transport
- Planning and executing the shipment of hazardous materials
- Operating vehicles which transport hazardous materials
The US Department of Transportation has four different categories of basic, required training for hazmat employees. They must undergo general awareness training, function-specific training, safety training, and security training (which must be completed within 90 days of being hired). It is up to the employer to determine the most efficient, yet thorough, method of training that the hazmat employee must take. An environmental management company such as AEG Environmental is often the best choice for ensuring your hazmat employees have a complete training regimen.
Requirements for Retraining
Not only do new hires need hazardous materials training, but all of your employees will need to be retrained once every three years as required by the DOT. And if your employees are assigned new job functions or change roles, they will need retraining within 90 days.
Documentation of Training
The DOT also requires that employers hold documentation proving that employees have completed the necessary training. You must keep records of each employee’s training history for the past three years, and these records must remain on file during employment and for 90 days after. The records should be organized and stored in such a way that they are easily accessible if an EPA or DOT inspector should request them.
WE CAN HELP YOU WITH TRAINING YOUR HAZMAT EMPLOYEES. CONTACT US TODAY!
No matter what kind of environmental issue you may have, AEG Environmental can help. We handle every situation with care, dedication, and a commitment to exemplary customer service. When you have an emergency, you can rely on us! Need training? We can handle that too! We train in a wide variety of environmental management areas so that your company can remain compliant with EPA, DOT, and OSHA. Make sure to check out our blog for the latest and greatest in the waste management world! You should also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn for updates.
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