Occupational Safety and Health

The mission of the OSHA is to save lives, prevent injuries, and protect the health of employees in the workplace.25 OSHA accomplishes these goals through several regulatory requirements including the hazard communication standard (HCS) and the Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Worker Protection Standard (HAZWOPER).

The HCS was promulgated to provide workers with access to information about the hazards and identities of the chemicals they are exposed to while working, as well as the measures they can take to protect themselves. OSHA's HCS requires employers to establish hazard communication programs to transmit information on the hazards of chemicals to their employees by means of labels on containers, material safety data sheets, and training programs.

The HAZWOPER was developed to protect the health and safety of workers engaged in operations at hazardous waste sites, hazardous waste treatment facilities, and emergency response locations. HAZWOPER covers issues such as training, medical surveillance, and maximum exposure limits.

The major interactions between RCRA and OSHA include the following2:

1. Hazardous waste generators and TSDFs may need to comply with OSHA training and planning standards, in addition to RCRA requirements.

2. HAZWOPER regulations may be applicable to RCRA corrective action cleanup activities and to hazardous waste operations at generator facilities and TSDFs.

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