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Hazardous Substances Training Requirements

You need training to handle hazardous substances. If a substance is particularly hazardous, legislation places specific responsibilities on the person in charge of the substance and on those people using the substance. These responsibilities depend on the hazard classification and the quantity involved. In some cases, the substance may be required to be under the personal control of an approved handler.


The Health and Safety in Employment legislation also requires all employees who deal with hazardous substance of any kind, in a place of work to either be trained, or be supervised by someone who is trained.


How do I get training?

Training may be acquired in a number of ways including:

  • on the job training
  • formal training provided by, for example, an industry training provider delivering an industry training organisation unit standard
  • an independent training organisation. If you use any other trainer, check with your test certifier beforehand that they will recognise the training and provide you with an approved handler test certificate.


Last updated 30 August 2014


On Monday 4 April 2016, the New Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) came into effect.

HSWA repeals the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992, with immediate effect.

All references to the 1992 Act on this website and within our guidance will be progressively removed.