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SARA (Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act) and the Security Professional

NCJ Number
Security Management Volume: 32 Issue: 5 Dated: (May 1988) Pages: 53-55
D H Hoover
Date Published
3 pages
A new Federal law, Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) Title III of 1986, can now be used by security professionals to recognize and control hazardous materials.
SARA is having a significant impact on security and loss prevention in the areas of training, facility planning, and incident control. It is intended to encourage the safe handling and control of hazardous chemicals in fixed facilities throughout the United States. Major portions of SARA deal directly with assessing chemicals and developing an emergency plan should hazardous materials be released into the atmosphere. Also known as the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act, SARA Title III is an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standard. The purpose is to provide (1) emergency planning and notification to protect the public in the event of a release of hazardous chemicals, (2) specific information on hazardous chemicals used, stored, or manufactured in communities throughout the U.S., and (3) training for all first responders who may become involved in a hazardous materials incident. Though the EPA is responsible for the implementation and enforcement of SARA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is primarily concerned with employee safety in the workplace. OSHA's Hazard Communication Standard was implemented to, among other things, collect information about hazardous chemicals. The requirements of SARA include appointing State and local emergency response commissions, adhering to guidelines for assembling and reporting information on hazardous chemicals, and filing inventory forms for all hazardous chemicals identified by EPA and OSHA. Security personnel should be keenly aware of hazardous materials at the facility, be trained to recognize the release of a hazardous material, know who to contact, and be familiar with emergency response plans. A facility coordinator should be designated in industries where certain hazardous materials are kept onsite and should develop an internal emergency plan. All first responders should have training in hazardous materials awareness, as well as other security personnel.