MARCH – DECEMBER

Preparation

At this time of year, the best compliance teams are starting to think about how data is being collected, how changes are documented, and what documents need updated.

Questions to Ask Yourself & Your Team

  • How would I know that a new chemical is being used onsite, or if a chemical quantity increased? Would it be captured in a new chemical review process?
  • Do I have contacts at my LEPC and SERC who I can contact with questions? What questions would they ask if they came onsite?
  • Does my site map and emergency response plan need updated? Are my SDSs the most the current version available?
  • Do you have a contact with your local fire department? Have you scheduled an inspection with your local fire department? Is your local fire department familiar with your site?

March to December: Data Management

For leading and fast-growth EHS teams, Tier II reporting is a year-wide project. As early as August, teams are starting to look at their purchasing information and chemical inventory to review updates needed for reporting requirements such as updating facility contacts or SDSs, adjusting reporting thresholds, or whether regulatory laws have changed.

Staying vigilant during the data management process leads to increased foresight that helps EHS teams make better decisions leading up to Tier II season. Here is a comprehensive list of compliance tasks to guide you during the data management phase.

Checklist

  • The first step is gathering purchasing information and inventory to make sure new chemicals or quantities are captured.
    • Review your product inventory and check whether a chemical contains a Hazardous Substance or Extremely Hazardous Substance (EHS). To determine which chemicals are considered an EHS refer to 40 CFR Part 355.
    • Did a new chemical exceed the reporting threshold at any time during the past year? This requires an EPCRA notification to be filed.
  • Next, compare the current year’s purchasing and facility contact information from previously-submitted Tier II reports.
    • Keep an eye out for emergency contact information that has changed. This requires an EPCRA notification to be filed.
  • Check the status for state-specific reporting requirements and become familiar with your individual state portals and how any changes will impact your report.
    • Log into the state portal to ensure your login information and password is up to date.
    • Does the state or local regulatory body require anything specific for the emergency plan? Review specific requirements and update site or emergency plans based on state or LEPC requirements.
  • Do you have any questions about reporting thresholds or requirements for Tier II? Reach out to your State Emergency Response Commission (SERC), LEPC, and local fire department early on.
    • Maintain a great working relationship with your LEPC or Fire Departments to take advantage of exercise opportunities and assistance with onsite response.

EVERGREEN TASKS (IMPORTANT EVERY MONTH)

  • Confirm local, state, or federal requirements haven’t changed
  • Review and update site plan
  • Review emergency contact information; file required EPCRA 302 notification if the facility emergency coordinator has changed.
  • Contact State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) to clear up any questions prior to reporting period

Case Study

By gathering their facility data and verifying state-specific requirements with the help of regulatory compliance experts, Bunzl was able to gain full view into their compliance process, determining reporting thresholds at each facility and when facility contact and product details need to be updated.

LEPC exercises

Madison, our Compliance Program Manager, previously worked with a larger manufacturing company that worked with their LEPC to host a large-scale exercise at the facility. This exercise allowed for local responders to have better response information and get a better understanding of where things were located at the facility. Within a couple years the facility did have a real-world incident and the first responders were able to use the insight they had from the exercise to reduce damage to the building and make sure that there were no injuries from the release.

Point of Interest

Proactive portal logins

Pennsylvania passwords expire every 60 days and require facilities to login within 6 months of a password expiration or the account will be revoked.

“The best advice I can give an EHS manager is to look at Tier II as a year-wide project instead of just a Jan-Mar project. If Tier II data becomes outdated, it can be more harmful than helpful, so updating the data throughout the year helps keep this from happening.”

Madison Martin – Compliance Program Manager

Learn more about Madison >

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