You know people are prone to wait to the last minute to meet a deadline and the nation’s UST operators are no exception. By August 8, 2012, most UST operators in the United States are under regulatory obligation to get trained as Class A, B and C UST operators.You probably know the drill by now: Class A operators are usually the owner, Class B operators are the site manager, and Class C operators are anyone at a UST site who might respond to an incident. That’s tens of thousands of AB operators and probably over a million Class Cs.
Activity on our web page has been staggering compared to previous months as everyone is sprinting to the deadline. We even had to add additional computers servers to keep up with the demand of generating online certificates. Many of the phone calls this week have involved telling folks not to lose their cool and focus on assigning, training and certifying.
But the real question is: What happens after August 8?
In truth it will depend on the state’s enforcement policy. While it will be illegal not be trained in most states, enforcement for the nation’s half-million tanks will not happen overnight.
- Some states like Wyoming and Wisconsin require operators to submit proof of training when complete.
- Some states require like Colorado require annual proof along with your annual tank registration fees.
- Some states, most states really, will ask for proof of training at the time of inspection.
- Some states like West Virginia require proof of training and photo ID to be furnished during inspection.
- Some companies we’re talked to have an internal policy to meet the deadline regardless of whether the state has rules or not.
- Some states have extended the deadline (Alaska and Washington): 12/31/12; Florida is 2014 or 2015 depending on the ages of the tank).
- Some states and territories (Guam, US Virgin Islands) trained everyone through contractors like us so they know who’s been trained and who’s not.
So the bottom line: be ready when the inspector shows up. Have your training certificates ready in your compliance binder.
Will a state “red tag” your site and shut you down? It’s possible though hopefully only for sites that have significant violations. Again it depends on how tough your state enforcement program is. Likely you would get a notice of violation and possibly a fine for non-compliance.
So good luck and get trained today!