1. You may already have an emergency response plan, such as required by chapter 296-843 WAC, Hazardous waste operations or by state and locally coordinated response efforts (Section 303 of Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA), Title III). You may use those plans to comply with this section, if they include the items listed below.
2. Before a written emergency response plan can be developed, you will need to anticipate the types of uncontrolled releases that employees could encounter in your workplace(s).
1. Responders' level of training depends on the duties or roles the employer assigns.
2. Training for the employees' role should address the competencies specified in Tables 3 through 6.
3. Training on specific substances may be appropriate depending on the number and characteristics of hazardous substances expected to be encountered. For example, if employees may only respond to one substance, you could provide training (covering the knowledge and skills specified in Tables 3 through 6) on that single substance. If employees might respond to a range of hazardous substances, training may be required to cover categories of hazardous substances.
4. Videos and automated training methods (for example: Interactive computer-based programs) may be used in training; however, instructors must be readily available to:
a. Encourage and provide responses to questions for the benefit of the group.
b. Evaluate employee understanding of the material.
c. Provide other instructional interaction to the group.
Limited action includes shutting down processes, closing emergency valves and other critical actions to secure the operation, or prevent the incident from increasing in severity.
Limited Action and Employee Roles
If . . .
Then employees involved would be:
Limited action could be conducted in the danger area
Considered emergency responders
Limited action will not be conducted in the danger area
Considered evacuees, not emergency responders
1. If a manufacturer's printed information or WISHA rule adequately addresses procedural requirements (such as donning or doffing for PPE), it is not necessary to rewrite this into your program; simply attach the printed information.
2. You may use written procedures provided by the equipment manufacturer when they meet the requirements of other chapters, including chapter 296-842 WAC, Respirators.
In situations where multiple employers could respond to an incident, all plans should consistently address:
1. Who will be designated as the incident commander (IC); and
2. If, when, and how transfer of the incident commander (IC) position will take place.
Roles and Duties of Emergency Responders
If the employee's role is:
Then all of the following apply. They:
First responder at the awareness level
Are likely to witness or discover a hazardous substance release
Are trained to initiate an emergency response by notifying the proper authorities of the release
Take no further action beyond notifying the authorities
First responder at the operations level
Respond to actual or potential releases in order to protect nearby persons, property, and/or the environment from the effects of the release
Are trained to respond defensively, without trying to stop the release
May try to:
- Confine the release from a safe distance
- Keep it from spreading
- Protect others from hazardous exposures
Hazardous materials technician
Respond to releases or potential releases, with the intent of stopping the release
Are trained to approach the point of release offensively in order to, either:
- Stop the release using other methods
Hazardous materials specialist
Respond along with, and provide support to, hazardous materials technicians
Are required to have more specific knowledge of hazardous substances than a hazardous materials technician
Act as the site activity liaison when federal, state, local, and other government authorities participate
Have ultimate responsibility for:
- Coordination of the response effort
- Will assume control of the incident beyond the first responder awareness level
Are a technical, medical, environmental, or other type of expert
May represent a hazardous substance manufacturer, shipper, or a government agency
May be present at the scene or may assist from an off-site location
Regularly work with specific hazardous substances
Are trained in the hazards of specific substances
Are expected to give technical advice or assistance to the incident commander or incident safety officer, when requested
Skilled support personnel
Are needed to perform an immediate, specific emergency support task at the site
Are skilled in the operation of equipment including:
- Earth moving equipment
- Hoisting equipment
Incident safety officer
Are designated by the incident commander
Are knowledgeable in operations being implemented at the site
Have specific responsibility to:
- Identify and evaluate hazards
- Provide direction on employee safety matters