OSHA Oil Spill Kit Requirements
Are oil spill kits required by OSHA? The simple answer is, no.
While there are many OSHA and EPA requirements on how to be prepared for oil spills, the regulations do not specifically require spills kits.
Even though it’s not required, there should always be proper spill supplies on hand and easily accessible in case you need them. This could include the following:
- Spill kits
- Wet Mops
- PPE (safety glasses, gloves, boot covers, face mask)
- First Aid
- Absorbent mats or socks, or berms to quickly contain the spill
- Plugging device to stop the leak
- Drain protectors to minimize environmental impact
Spill kits are a good best-management practice under the EPA SPCC rule and the OSHA’s 29 CFR 1910.22, Subpart D rule (walking/working surfaces must be kept dry and clean). A spill kit can:
- Reduce the potential for slips, trips, and falls
- Reduce exposure to employees
- Prevent chemical release to sewer and waterways
- Be integrated as part of a quick response plan for a quick and safe response protocol
- Reduce risk and limit impacts of spills
What should be in a spill kit depends on the potential spill size, type of spill, and if workers will have the appropriate PPE available. For example, an oil spill kit may contain a variety of oil absorbents, safety gloves, and a wet mop.
Spill kits are generally good for oil spills up to around 100 gallons. After that, additional tools and methods might be needed, such as a pump.
Depending on the spill size, the spill may be a reportable spill to OSHA and EPA. Regardless, it’s a good idea to report all uses of a spill kit in your facility.
Employees should report any spill kit usage to the safety manager.
In addition, the spill kits should be regularly inspected to ensure they are properly replenished. Adding a seal to the spill kits (pictured to the right) will help simplify the inspection process.
What to do with your Used Absorbents after a Spill
Wondering what to do with your used absorbents? Please refer to The Ultimate Guide: How to Dispose of Used Rags and Oil Absorbents.
As an alternative to disposal, consider switching to reusable absorbent service where your used absorbents get laundered for reuse. With a reuse program, there is no disposal, incineration, or manifesting needed, saving you the hassle and cost of disposal.
About ITU AbsorbTech
ITU AbsorbTech is one of the largest family-owned industrial laundry service companies in the nation.
We help manufacturers eliminate a waste stream and support safety goals with reuse and recycling programs such as printer and shop towels, reusable oil absorbents, garments, and slip prevention floor mats.