Answers to Frequently Asked 527 CMR 33 Questions Reply

CAPACCIO has played a part in helping to clarify questions about the 527 CMR 33 Hazardous Materials Process or Processing Regulation by submitting questions to the Board of Fire Prevention.  Answers to our questions, as well as answers to questions from others, are available on the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services website at this link:

For more information or if you need help complying with this regulation, please contact Linda Swift at 508-970-0033 ext. 119 or or Chris Walton at 508-970-0033 ext. 139 or


Proposed Changes to the Hoisting Regulations Reply


The licensing of hoisting machinery operators is covered under Massachusetts General Laws (MGL) Chapter 146, Section 53. The regulation, 520 Code of Massachusetts Regulations (CMR) 6.00 associated with this law, requires all operators of hoisting machinery, including forklifts used in manufacturing, retail and warehouses, to complete an application and pass a test to obtain a license from the Massachusetts Department of Public Safety (DPS).  The regulation applies to all hoisting machinery used on private or public property where the height of the lift exceeds 10 feet or the weight of the load exceeds 500 pounds. Section 53 (e) of the amended law added the following exemption to the licensing requirements for:

“A company which operates hoisting equipment specifically limited to industrial lift trucks, forklifts, overhead cranes and other hoisting equipment, specifically authorized by the department, and used exclusively on company property.”

The amendment states that the exemption will only apply if a company has:

(1)  at least one supervisory employee on site at all times of operation that holds a license issued by the department under this section and is designated as the responsible person in charge of hoisting equipment during that period of operation

(2)  an in-service training program for employees approved by the department which may be audited by the department

(3)  company licenses issued to each trained and certified employee which shall contain a picture of the licensee, a list of the specific hoisting equipment the licensee has been qualified to operate, and the signature of the supervisor who holds a department license.

How does it affect companies?

The DPS is proposing a change to the regulations to match the added exemption to Section 53(e) of the law. A company seeking to comply with the hoisting license requirements and exemption must first designate a supervisory employee(s) to be responsible for the operation of hoisting equipment.  The supervisory employee(s) must then obtain a Class 1C hoisting license from the DPS.  After the designated employee(s) receives a license from the DPS, the company must then provide the DPS with a copy of its complete training program used to train employees to operate forklifts.  The company must provide DPS with the complete training program, not just a description or outline.

After the DPS approves the company’s training program, the supervisor(s) who have been issued a Class 1C hoisting license then need to train employees in accordance with the approved program.  Authorized operators would then be issued a license that includes a picture, a list of the specific equipment that the employee is qualified to operate, and the signature of the supervisor who holds the Class 1C license and conducted the training and evaluation.  Employees can only be trained and certified to operate the specific equipment for which the supervisory employee holds a license issued by the DPS.  At all times of operation, there must be a supervisory employee on-site who holds a license.  A public hearing on the proposed changes to the regulations will be held on December 3, 2012.

Potential fines for noncompliance

In addition to above, the DPS drafted a new regulation, 520 CMR 1.00, that establishes standards for issuing monetary fines for violations of certain statutes and regulations. The DPS is now authorized, under MGL Chapter 22, Section 21, to assess fines of up $5,000 for violations of certain statutes and regulations, including hoisting. The DPS will hold a public hearing on 520 CMR 1.00 on November 28, 2012.  For more information, contact Colleen Walsh at 508.970.0033 extension 129 or

When to Notify the MassDEP Bureau of Waste Prevention of a Spill or Release Reply

Did you know that you may be required to notify more than one section of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) when you have a spill that requires implementation of your hazardous waste contingency plan?

Spills or releases of hazardous waste – whether inside the facility or outside to the environment – are reportable to the MassDEP Bureau of Waste Prevention at the appropriate MassDEP Regional Office when there is an imminent or actual emergency involving hazardous waste that requires the facility to activate its hazardous waste contingency plan.  This requirement is in addition to notification (if required) to the MassDEP Emergency Response Section per the Massachusetts Contingency Plan (310 CMR 30.400).

The MassDEP hazardous waste regulations require that Large Quantity Generators (LQGs) have a written hazardous waste contingency plan (310 CMR 30.341(1)(b)) that outlines what to do in the event of an emergency involving hazardous waste.  Even if a facility has to activate the hazardous waste contingency plan for something as simple as calling the Emergency Coordinator for a spill of hazardous waste inside the facility, the facility must notify the MassDEP Bureau of Waste Prevention.  The same applies if you have a bulging or leaking drum of hazardous waste that is overpacked by your emergency response team and then shipped off-site for proper disposal.

These reporting requirements are outlined in 310 CMR 30.341(b) and 310 CMR 30.521(e)(7) and apply to LQGs when there is an imminent or actual emergency involving hazardous waste which triggers the need to implement the hazardous waste contingency plan. This applies even if it does not result in a reportable release pursuant to 310 CMR 40.000 (The Massachusetts Contingency Plan requirements).

We recommend developing a methodology of who to report to and when, and including it in your hazardous waste contingency plan so that it is readily available to personnel responsible for reporting.

What to report, when, and to whom, can be confusing.  Please contact Linda Swift at 508.970.0033 extension 119 or with any questions you may have regarding reporting spills.

The MassDEP Extends “Qualifying Period” Under The Permit Extension Act Reply

In 2010, the Massachusetts legislature passed the Permit Extension Act (Act) that established an automatic two-year extension to certain permits and licenses that were issued concerning the use or development of real property. The 2010 Act applied to permits and licenses that were issued during the “qualifying period” of August 15, 2008 through August 15, 2010.  This qualifying period was just recently expanded by an additional two years to cover permits or licenses issued through August 15, 2012.  With limited exceptions, the Act automatically extends, for four years beyond its otherwise applicable expiration date, any permit or approval that was “in effect or existence” during the qualifying period.  As an example; a covered permit or license that expired on September 1, 2009 would be automatically revived (i.e., put back into force) and the new expiration date would be September 1, 2013.  This example and other frequently asked questions can be found on the MassDEP website.

The list of potential permits or licenses affected by the Act is extensive as it applies to any permit, certificate, order (excluding enforcement orders), license, certification, determination, exemption, variance, waiver, building permit, or other approval or determination of rights from any municipal, regional or state governmental entity, concerning the use or development of real property.  The potential list includes permits or licenses issued under the following chapters of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts General Laws: Chapter 21, Chapter 21A (Except for section 16: Civil and Administrative Penalties), Chapter 21D, Chapter 30 (Sections 61 to 61H inclusive), Chapter 30A, Chapter 40, Chapter 40A, Chapter 40B, Chapter 40C, Chapter 40R, Chapter 41, Chapter 43D, Chapter 81 (Section 21), Chapter 91, Chapter 131, Chapter 131A, Chapter 143, Chapter 249 (Sections 4 and 5), and Chapter 258.

If you have any questions regarding the extension and whether your permits or licenses may be covered, please contact Chris Walton, PE, at 508.970.0033 ext. 139 or