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  • Employees who are likely to be exposed to asbestos above the PEL must be trained prior to working in those areas.
  • Training requirements will vary based on the work class involved.

Employers must provide a training program for all employees who are likely to be exposed in excess of a permissible exposure limit (PEL) and for all employees performing Class I through IV asbestos operations. Employees must be trained prior to or at initial assignment and at least annually thereafter. Training courses must be easily understandable and include the following information:

  • Ways to recognize asbestos.
  • Adverse health effects of asbestos exposure.
  • Relationship between smoking and asbestos in causing lung cancer.
  • Operations that could result in asbestos exposure and the importance of protective controls to minimize exposure.
  • Purpose, proper use, fitting instruction, and limitations of respirators.
  • Appropriate work practices for performing asbestos jobs.
  • Medical surveillance program requirements.
  • Contents of the standard.
  • Names, addresses, and phone numbers of public health organizations that provide information and materials or conduct smoking cessation programs.
  • Sign and label requirements and the meaning of their legends.
  • Written materials relating to employee training and self-help smoking cessation programs at no cost to employees.

The following additional training requirements apply depending on the work class involved:

  • For Class I operations and for Class II operations that require the use of critical barriers (or equivalent isolation methods) and/or negative pressure enclosures, training must be equivalent in curriculum, method, and length to the EPA Model Accreditation Plan (MAP) asbestos abatement worker training (see Part 763 Subpart E Appendix C).
  • For employees performing Class II operations involving one generic category of building materials containing asbestos (e.g., roofing, flooring, or siding materials or transite panels), training may be covered in an eight-hour course that includes hands-on experience.
  • For Class III operations, training must be equivalent in curriculum and method to the 16-hour Operations and Maintenance course developed by EPA for maintenance and custodial workers whose work disturbs asbestos-containing material (ACM) (see 763.92). The course must include hands-on training on proper respirator use and work practices.
  • For Class IV operations, training must be equivalent in curriculum and method to EPA awareness training (see 1926.1101 for more information). Training must focus on the locations of ACM or presumed ACM (PACM) and the ways to recognize damage and deterioration and avoid exposure. The course must be at least two hours long.

Note: Employers must provide the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)’s Assistant Secretary and the Director of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) all information and training materials as requested.