Hazmat Training
1 May a hazmat employer/employee train and test themselves (e.g., owner-operator)?
2 Who certifies that an instructor is qualified to train, test, and certify in accordance with §172.704?
3 Does the trainer, who teaches and tests the hazmat employee, certify that the hazmat employee is trained/tested?
4 If an outside source trains but does not test the employee, must the employee be tested and certified based on this training?
5 Must the test be in a written format or may a skill demonstration be used?
6 Must the employee "pass" a test?
7 Does the IMDG Code, ICAO Technical Instructions, OSHA or EPA training fulfill the HMR requirements?
8 Who will enforce the training requirements in CFR 49 §172.704?
9 What type of fines would be involved?
10 An office administrative assistant types the required hazardous materials description on a shipping paper at the direction of another hazmat employee, item by item. Is the assistant a hazmat employee requiring training?
11 Do the training regulations apply to foreign flag vessels carrying hazardous materials?
12 Do the training regulations apply to hazmat employers and/or employees who operate a bulk vessel transporting hazardous materials?
13 Is a shipmaster a hazmat employer?
14 Do the regulations apply to employees working with materials that are consumer commodities?
15 Does a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) with HM/tank vehicle endorsement satisfy requirements?
Technical Hazmat Questions
16 What is PHMSA's purview/regulatory authority on transport of hazardous materials?
17 What is the DOT hazmat registration program and who is required to register?
18 How many hazmat enforcement investigators does PHMSA have, and what is their function?
19 Is there a cap on fines? How are fines determined and enforced?
20 Where do I find statistics on accidents/incidents fatalities, fines and corrective actions for hazmat infractions?
21 Where can I find a listing of current hazmat proposed rulemakings and their status?
Hazmat Security Questions
22 What are the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards or CFATS?
23 Who’s Covered?
24 What’s a Top-Screen?
25 Will you need to comply?

1 May a hazmat employer/employee train and test themselves (e.g., owner-operator)?
Yes, self-training is acceptable provided that all training requirements of CFR 49 §172.704 are met.
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2 Who certifies that an instructor is qualified to train, test, and certify in accordance with §172.704?
Except for certain FAA required CFR 14 training, the U.S. DOT does not review or certify training programs for pre-approval purposes. The employer must determine a trainer's qualifications based on their need.
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3 Does the trainer, who teaches and tests the hazmat employee, certify that the hazmat employee is trained/tested?
No, the hazmat employer must certify that the employee has been trained and tested.
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4 If an outside source trains but does not test the employee, must the employee be tested and certified based on this training?
Yes. It is the responsibility of the hazmat employer to meet these training requirements. However, a hazmat employer may designate an outside source to train, test, and certify on its behalf.
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5 Must the test be in a written format or may a skill demonstration be used?
Any test that ensures that the employee can perform the assigned duties in compliance with the HMR is acceptable. Training and testing may be accomplished in a variety of ways: performance, written, verbal, or a combination of these.
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6 Must the employee "pass" a test?
The requirements do not state that the employee must "pass" a test; however, an employee may only be certified in areas in which he/she can successfully perform their hazmat duties.
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7 Does the IMDG Code, ICAO Technical Instructions, OSHA or EPA training fulfill the HMR requirements?
This training may be used to the extent that the general awareness, function specific, and safety training and testing requirements of the HMR are met. Areas not covered will require additional training.
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8 Who will enforce the training requirements in CFR 49 §172.704?
Enforcement pertaining to carriers is the responsibility of each modal administration. Compliance or non-compliance with the training rule will be determined during safety and compliance reviews of shippers and carriers.
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9 What type of fines would be involved?
Violations of any hazardous materials regulations including training may be subject to a civil penalty of up to $55,000 but not less than $250.00 per violation, except the maximum civil penalty is $100,000 if the violation results in death or serious injury to any person or substantial destruction of property. The minimum penalty for a training violation is $495.00 per violation/per day. In appropriate cases, a criminal penalty of up to $500,000 and/or imprisonment of up to 5 years or both. (CFR 49 §107.329 and §107.333)
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10 An office administrative assistant types the required hazardous materials description on a shipping paper at the direction of another hazmat employee, item by item. Is the assistant a hazmat employee requiring training?
Yes, each person who performs any function subject to the HMR must be trained, except special circumstances addressed by 172.704(c).
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11 Do the training regulations apply to foreign flag vessels carrying hazardous materials?
Yes, the regulations apply to each domestic and foreign vessel when in dry dock or in navigable waters of the United States.
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12 Do the training regulations apply to hazmat employers and/or employees who operate a bulk vessel transporting hazardous materials?
No. Except for transportation in bulk packagings, the bulk carriage of hazardous materials by water is governed by 46 CFR Chapter I. See 49 CFR § 176.5(d).
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13 Is a shipmaster a hazmat employer?
No, the shipmaster is a hazmat employee; the operator of the vessel is the hazmat employer.
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14 Do the regulations apply to employees working with materials that are consumer commodities?
Yes.
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15 Does a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) with HM/tank vehicle endorsement satisfy requirements?
A hazmat employer must determine applicability of CDL to the specific functions the employee performs and provide training for functions not covered by the endorsement.
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Technical Hazmat Questions
16 What is PHMSA's purview/regulatory authority on transport of hazardous materials?
PHMSA's Office of Hazardous Materials Safety performs a range of functions to support the safe transport of hazardous material. These are outlined at: http://hazmat.dot.gov/contact/ohhms_fn.htm
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17 What is the DOT hazmat registration program and who is required to register?
Under law, certain offerers and transporters of hazardous materials are required to register with the Department of Transportation and pay a registration fee. Hazmat registration fees are redistributed as Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness grants (HMEP) to approved emergency responders for hazmat training and to States, Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs) and Indian Tribes for hazmat planning. See http://hazmat.dot.gov/regs/register/register.htm for more information.
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18 How many hazmat enforcement investigators does PHMSA have, and what is their function?
PHMSA has 36 hazardous materials investigators who conduct risk based compliance inspections and complaint investigations of companies subject to the hazmat regulations. PHMSA investigators foster partnership roles with other Federal agencies and state and local governments to conduct investigations of packaging manufacturers, requalifiers, reconditioners, and certifiers, shippers, freight consolidators, and freight forwarders. The investigators review company procedures, practices, and operations for compliance with the regulations and recommend enforcement action for violation of the regulations. Outreach and education is always an integral part of every operation.
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19 Is there a cap on fines? How are fines determined and enforced?
The correct term is "civil penalties," not "fines." Federal hazardous materials law has set $55,000 as the maximum civil penalty that may be assessed for a violation with $250 as the minimum civil penalty, except for training violations which are set at a minimum of $495. If an inspection has revealed violations warranting the initiation of a civil penalty enforcement case, the matter is referred to PHMSA's Office of Chief Counsel.

An Office of Chief Counsel attorney then prepares a Notice of Probable Violation, proposing a civil penalty. The company may respond to this Notice by paying the penalty or providing information in its defense.

If the company does not pay the penalty, then its information is evaluated. If the Chief Counsel determines the penalty should be assessed, an Order is issued which makes a formal finding of violation and assesses a civil penalty.

If a company still does not pay the penalty, debt collection procedures are initiated.

For further information, recent changes in rules and regulations and a list of recent penalty actions please visit http://hazmat.dot.gov/enforce/hmenforce.htm
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20 Where do I find statistics on accidents/incidents fatalities, fines and corrective actions for hazmat infractions?
OHME enforces the requirement to submit a telephonic and/or written report (DOT Form 5800.1) following the unintentional release of hazardous materials in transportation.

The penalty action reports, or enforcement notices, provide the name of company and type of business, a summary of the violations, and the civil penalty paid. Information about corrective actions is not made available to the public and is not kept in statistical form.

Incident Data is found at http://hazmat.dot.gov/enforce/spills/spills.htm
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21 Where can I find a listing of current hazmat proposed rulemakings and their status?
Rulemakings, Federal Register Notices and other pertinent information may be accessed at http://hazmat.dot.gov/regs/rules.htm
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Hazmat Security Questions
22 What are the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards or CFATS?
The Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards, contained in 6 CFR part 27, allow the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to create a risk-based, tiered structure for high-risk chemical plants. The standards give the department authority to levy civil penalties of up to $25,000 per day, and the ability to shut down non-compliant facilities.
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23 Who’s Covered?
Appendix A to the rule includes a list of chemicals and Screening Threshold Quantities (STQs) that DHS will use to determine whether to further assess whether a chemical facility presents a high risk. If a facility possesses or plans to possess, at any relevant point in time, a quantity of a chemical listed in Appendix A to part 27, the facility must complete and submit a Top-Screen. There are five exemptions:

  • Facilities regulated under Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA)
  • Public water systems (Safe Drinking Act)
  • Water treatment works facilities (Water Pollution Control Act)
  • Facilities owned/operated by Departments of Defense or Energy
  • Facilities regulated by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission
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    24 What’s a Top-Screen?
    Top-Screen means an initial screening process through which chemical facilities provide information to DHS. DHS will then use the information to determine whether the facility “presents a high level of security risk.”

    If a facility possesses any of the chemicals listed in Appendix A of the rule at the corresponding Screening Threshold Quantities, it must complete and submit a Top-Screen via the Chemical Security Assessment Tool (CSAT):

  • Unless otherwise notified, within 60 calendar days of the effective date of Appendix A for facilities that possess any of the chemicals listed in Appendix A at the corresponding STQs; or
  • Within 60 calendar days for facilities that come into possession of any of the chemicals listed in Appendix A at the corresponding STQs; or
  • Within the time frame provided in any written notification from DHS or specified in any subsequent Federal Register notice.
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    25 Will you need to comply?
    Not many companies will need to comply with these regulations beyond the Top-Screen. DHS estimates that as many as 7,000 facilities will fall into the high-risk category, with 300 to 400 of them falling within the top two tiers. The majority of covered chemical facilities will be contacted by the DHS and given 60 days to:

  • Prepare Security Vulnerability Assessments (SVAs), which identify facility security vulnerabilities; and
  • Develop and implement Site Security Plans (SSPs), which include measures that satisfy the identified risk-based performance standards.

    Certain covered chemical facilities, in specified circumstances, may submit Alternate Security Programs (ASPs) in lieu of an SVA, SSP, or both. The department will provide technical assistance to facility owners and operators as needed.

    Security standards will be required to achieve specific outcomes, such as:

  • Securing the perimeter and critical targets,
  • Controlling access,
  • Deterring theft of potentially dangerous chemicals, and
  • Preventing internal sabotage.

    The rule contains associated provisions addressing inspections and audits, recordkeeping, and the protection of information that constitutes Chemical-terrorism Vulnerability Information (CVI).

    This rule does not intend to displace other federal requirements administered by the Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of Transportation, or other federal agencies. For example, the rule does not change the requirements for EPA’s Risk Management Rule (40 CFR 68) or SARA Title III or OSHA’s process safety management of highly hazardous chemicals (§1910.119).
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