Is OSHA 40 the Same as HAZWOPER 40?

OSHA loves its acronyms and its numbered courses, which can make it really easy to mix up the name of the training you need.

OSHA 40 vs OSHA 30

OSHA 40 training technically doesn't exist.

If you got here by typing in "OSHA 40," "OSHA 40-hour training," or "40-hour OSHA card," then you're either looking for a HAZWOPER 40 or an OSHA 30 course.

It's an understandable mix-up, because:

  • OSHA seriously loves the Acronym + Number-of-Hours formula and uses it a lot.
  • HAZWOPER and OSHA are closely related programs, so something like "OSHA 40 HAZWOPER" isn't completely wrong.
  • Sometimes the numbers are too similar not to mix up (40 vs 30, 10 vs 8).
  • You might only hear these course names once or twice in your life (unless you're an occupational safety professional).

The most common reason people are looking for an OSHA 40-hour training is that they need the high-level HAZWOPER course because your job involves handling hazardous waste.

But it's possible you got the number wrong instead, and you're looking for a supervisor-level introduction to OSHA known as OSHA 30.

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OSHA 30-Hour Construction

OSHA 30 Outreach for construction covers 29 CFR 1926 regulations. DOL card included.

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OSHA 30-Hour General Industry

OSHA 30 Outreach general industry covers 29 CFR 1910 regulations. DOL card included.

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Are HAZWOPER and OSHA the Same Thing?

Yes and no?

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is a federal agency that creates and enforces on-the-job safety protections for most American workers. It was established under the US Department of Labor in the early 1970s.

Then in the late 70s, Congress passed legislation to regulate the disposal of hazardous waste and clean up existing dump sites. They asked OSHA to develop protections for the workers that would be involved in this process.

This led to OSHA's publication of the HAZardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) standard.

So, HAZWOPER is actually part of OSHA. It's a specific standard (regulation) just like Confined Space or Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) standards.

HAZWOPER vs OSHA Training

OSHA protects worker safety from many different angles, but compliance training is one of the most important parts. After all, workers can't practice safety unless they know how to recognize different hazards and either prevent them or minimize the risk.

What is OSHA Compliance Training?

OSHA requires employers to train workers in "everything they need to know to do their job safely."

"Everything" is a tall order, but many OSHA standards explicitly require training. OSHA will dictate the required scope of the topic and the frequency for refresher training, but that's usually as specific as they get.

Typically, you can cover everything you need to know about most standards in a 1-hour course, and some standards let you go as long as three years between refreshers.

What is HAZWOPER Training?

Just as HAZWOPER is just a specific standard, HAZWOPER training is just one special category of compliance training.

But hazardous waste cleanup and disposal are much more complicated than other standards, so OSHA got a lot more specific with the training requirements, down to a minimum number of hours. The HAZWOPER standard requires much more extensive training than any other standard, and workers need an 8-hour refresher every year.

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HAZWOPER 8-Hour Refresher Course

Duration Hours: 8

Take our 8-hour refresher course to meet your annual training requirements.

What is HAZWOPER 8-Hour Training? If you remove hazardous wastes or are exposed to hazardous substances at your job and need to meet annual training requirements, our 8-Hour HAZWOPER Refresher course is perfect for you. The course reviews all the materials required by OSHA 29 CFR 1910.120 You’ll get an overview of a variety of topics, such as personal protective equipment, decontamination, confined space entry, medical surveillance, and standard emergency procedures. You will also learn how to...

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What is OSHA Outreach Training?

While OSHA compliance training (HAZWOPER or otherwise) is federally mandatory, there's another type of OSHA training that OSHA considers voluntary.

The OSHA Outreach Training program was created to satisfy demand from employers and regulators for a clear-cut minimum safety training benchmark. OSHA considers it to be separate from compliance training, but since the Outreach programs cover key standards, there is some overlap.

Each OSHA-defined "industry" has two Outreach courses, one for supervisors and one for regular workers. The supervisor course is longer, but both courses introduce the purpose of OSHA, the protections it provides, and the most common hazards they might encounter in their industry.

While Outreach courses don't fulfill your compliance obligations for OSHA, some employers, states, and local jurisdictions require a DOL card (proof that you've completed an Outreach course) for certain high-risk jobs.

HAZWOPER 40 vs OSHA 30

HAZWOPER 40 and OSHA 30 courses are some of the longest required occupational safety trainings you'll ever see (unless you're unlucky enough to work construction in New York City).

On the other hand, their curricula have very little in common, and they have very different audiences and purposes.

What is OSHA 40?

OSHA 30, not to be confused with HAZWOPER 40, is the supervisor-level Outreach course.

It's designed for managers, supervisors, foremen, and anyone with supervisory responsibilities. While the 10-hour worker course covers worker protections and the most common hazards, this 30-hour supervisor course includes employer / managerial safety responsibilities and a broader range of hazards.

After all, a manager needs to know the hazards and standards that apply to everyone on their team. Most of OSHA 30's extra hours go toward topics that will help a supervisor properly oversee the safety of workers with different roles.

OSHA 30 is sometimes required at the state or local level. This is more common for construction supervisors, but Nevada also requires OSHA 30 General Industry for all entertainment-industry supervisors. You may also see it as a requirement on job listings for employers with high-risk workers like manufacturing and warehousing.

What is HAZWOPER 40?

HAZWOPER 40 is part of the HAZWOPER training program, which was created to educate three specific types of hazardous waste-related jobs.

Like OSHA Outreach, HAZWOPER training is divided up into different levels and named for the number of instructional hours in each. HAZWOPER 24-hour training is the initial training for workers who have minimal contact with hazardous materials, while HAZWOPER 40-hour training is for workers with the highest amount of exposure and risk.

HAZWOPER 40 is federally mandatory for anyone whose job meets the criteria.

While OSHA 30 is an introduction to worker safety and OSHA standards in general, HAZWOPER 40 focuses specifically on hazardous waste. It covers topics like toxicology, radiological hazards, decontamination, material sampling, and more.

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HAZWOPER 40-Hour Training + GHS Communication

Duration Hours: 40

Get trained on how to safely handle hazardous waste with our 40-Hour course.

What is 40-Hour HAZWOPER Training? Before you can enter or start work on an uncontrolled hazardous waste operation, you need to learn how to stay safe while handling dangerous chemicals. Our comprehensive online 40-Hour HAZWOPER course reviews a variety of topics that relate to Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER), including site characterization, hazardous chemicals, radiation hazards, personal protective equipment (PPE), and decontamination methods. Additionally, this course teaches you about best practices for safely handling and...

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Do You Need HAZWOPER 40 or OSHA 30?

Depending on your duties and geography, your job might require either or both of these courses. Thankfully, these days you can take OSHA 30 and HAZWOPER 40 online.

An online course lets you study at your own pace, wherever and whenever it's convenient. For OSHA 30, you'll get your 30-hour OSHA card in the mail right after you're done. For HAZWOPER 40, you'll need to complete some in-person practice with your employer before your training requirements are satisfied – but you'll have 40 fewer hours in the classroom than you would otherwise!

We've been a trusted and OSHA-authorized online training provider for over 20 years. We offer OSHA 30 for Construction or General Industry, as well as HAZWOPER 24, HAZWOPER 40, and the 8-hour annual refresher course.

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