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NESHAP compliance deadline is today

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Jan. 10, 2011 — Today is the compliance deadline for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) regulations.

Notification of compliance is due March 11.

Also known as HAPs 6H rule, the regulations place tighter restrictions on shop equipment, practices and training regarding paint stripping and surface coatings. The law is designed to reduce pollutants, specifically methylene chloride, cadmium, lead, manganese and nickel. Find a previous FenderBender story with specifics on the regulation here.

The new rule establishes two classes of painters: restricted and unrestricted, said Steven Schillinger, president of GRC-Pirk, which provides verification of painter training under the Certified Spray Coating program. Those not certified under the regulations are prohibited from spray coating without completing newly imposed training. Shop owners can claim exemption to the rule, but that results in many other restrictions and prohibits painters from using certain paint products.

Preventing employee illness is another key part of the rule, Schillinger said, so documenting employee training will be important in case shops have to defend against negligence claims or lawsuits related to exposure. He urged shops to take the new regulation seriously.

“Don’t let the lack of understanding of the implications in claiming EPA exemption or not training your painters according to the HAPs 6H rule lull you into inactivity,” Schillinger said. “After considering the unpleasant risk-to-reward liability, most rational body shop owners and operators would conclude that money spent on training and certifying their painters will not only result in a safer workplace but shield against personal injury lawsuits, and insure a better night’s sleep.”

The final regulation and a fact sheet are available on the Automotive Service Association (ASA) website.

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