Safety FAQ

Tuition FAQ

Safety FAQ

The definition of hazardous waste is complex. However, any material intended to be disposed of exhibits specific CHARACTERISTICS or is specifically LISTED by EPA as hazardous waste.

Hazardous Material is a substance (biological, chemical, radiological, and/or physical) that can cause injury to humans or animals, or damage to the environment, either by itself or through interaction with other factors. Hazardous materials are explosive, flammable, toxic, corrosive, oxidizing, irritating, or otherwise harmful.

Yes, containment of hazardous materials is required to protect the environment from contamination and the safety of the staff or faculty who work in areas where dangerous or hazardous materials are stored and used.

How is Hazard Waste handled in the studio?

On a small scale, COMPATIBLE wastes may be collected in small LABELED containers in a MARKED cabinet. Any other materials should be disposed of in the appropriately marked container.

In the studio, the following procedures apply:

  • All chemicals must be LABELED with the chemical or trade name.
  • All waste containers must indicate the word “WASTE” and a description of the waste.
  • DO NOT MIX waste unless specifically approved by the process.
  • All containers must be CLOSED (LIDS) when not in use.
  • Chemical waste must be placed in a PROPER CONTAINER
  • Do not ACCUMULATE too much waste (generally 55 gallons maximum per process)
  • NO LIQUIDS in the trash

In the studio, the following procedures apply:

  • NO DUMPING to drains or storm sewers
  • Wipe extra paint off your palette with a paper towel and throw it in the trash can.
  • Ask the instructor where to dispose of your mineral spirits. We have a flammable can specifically for this purpose.

In the studio, the following procedures apply:

  • Must be completely empty (internal pressure = external pressure) before disposal
  • If NOT EMPTY, then it must be collected as hazardous waste.

Agencies that control the regulations of the Environment, Health & Safety (EHS) in the United States and dictate our safety policies.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

OSHA, established under the Department of Labor by the OSHA act of 1970, regulates the storage and use of toxic and hazardous substances related to worker health and safety. OSHA regulations are found in Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 1910, Subpart H.

The OSHA Act requires employers to comply with OSHA standards and regulations and protect employees from recognized hazards in the workplace. OSHA enforces its rules and regulations by inspecting the workplaces of employers. When violations are discovered during inspections, OSHA issues citations and proposes monetary penalties. OSHA encourages companies to participate in Voluntary Protection Programs. Employers participating in these Voluntary Compliance Programs develop a new relationship with OSHA and are not subject to programmed inspections; however, compliance remains mandatory.

Phone: (202) 219-8271

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Addressed through the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the law that governs solid and hazardous waste disposal in the United States. 1976, amended in 1984. It states the need for facilities with dangerous waste substances to store containers in some containment system.

Stationary containers, such as tanks, and portable storage containers, such as 55-gallon drums, must have a system that will protect the environment from this waste if a leak occurs. Hazardous waste regulations appear in Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Portable container containment is addressed under Subpart I, Use and Management of Containers (EPS 40 CFR 264.175). Facilities dealing with the storage of hazardous materials may also be required to contain containment to meet the Uniform Fire Code (UFC) standards. Within the UFC standards, Section 80, 

  • Division III refers to the Hazard Materials Storage Requirements for containers and tanks. 
  • Division IV refers to Spill Control, Drainage Control, and Secondary Containment concerning hazardous materials.

For more information, visit their website at

EPA’s Spill Prevention, Control & Countermeasures Rule

Under the authority of the Clean Water Act, EPA published its Oil Pollution Prevention Rule (40 CFR 112) that took effect originally on January 10, 1974. The Rule was revised and strengthened on July 17, 2002. Facilities subject to the Rule must prepare and implement a plan to prevent any discharge of oil into or upon navigable waters of the U.S. (including groundwater) or adjoining shorelines. This written plan is called an SPCC Plan.

The plan must address the following:

  • (a) operating procedures the facility implements to prevent oil spills;
  • (b) control measures installed in order to avoid oil from entering navigable water;
  • (c) countermeasures to contain, clean up and mitigate the effects of oil spills.

Phone: (800) 621-3431

U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)

Serves as the focal point in the Federal Government for the coordinated National Transportation Policy. The DOT has authority over the shipping and transporting hazardous materials, including packaging and labeling. The DOT regulations can be found in the Code of Federal Regulations under Title 49 and are mainly based on the United Nations (UN) recommendations.

Phone: (202) 366-4000

National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)

Since 1896, it has been the most recognized non-profit organization dedicated to protecting human life and property from fire hazards.

Phone: (800) 344-3555