Licensing and Regulatory Affairs
Underground Storage Tank Owner/Operator Training and Certification
Section 1524 of the Federal Energy Policy Act of 2005) required that the state of Michigan promulgate amendments to the underground storage tank rules (Rules) to require each underground storage tank facility have Class A, Class B, and Class C operators. Candidates will need to pass a written exam in order to be certified as a Class A or Class B operator. A test is not required for the Class C operator, but those persons must be properly trained. The exam assures that underground storage tank system operators possess the necessary knowledge regarding the proper operation of underground storage tank systems.
Class A Operator: This is the person who has primary responsibility to operate and maintain the underground storage tank system. For a typical gas station, it is the owner of the station or his designee. For large corporations, this is the manager or designee responsible for tank operations. The class A operator can also be designated as a Class B operator as long as he/she has passed the Class B operator exam.
Class B Operator: This designation is for the individual or individuals who implement day-to-day aspects of operating, maintaining, and record keeping for underground storage tank systems at one or more facilities. For a typical gas station, it is the owner or the person/company contracted by the owner to maintain the tanks. For large corporations, it is the employee, or person/company contracted by the corporation to maintain the tanks. A broad knowledge base is required for a Class A operator, but the Class B operator must have in-depth knowledge of tank system operation and maintenance.
Class C Operator: This is an individual who is responsible for responding to alarms or other indications of emergencies caused by spills, releases, or overfills associated with an underground storage tank system. For a typical gas station, this is the cashier. Though an exam is not required, this person must be trained in responding to releases, alarms, and emergency conditions. Training can be performed by the Class A operators, Class B operators, or third-party vendors. Class C operator training is required to be documented.
See the Frequently Asked Questions prepared by the Michigan Manufacturers Association.
Consistent with the Federal requirements, the Rules provide an August 8, 2012, deadline to obtain the certification. Due to the delays in getting the rules promulgated the time frame for coming into compliance is shorter than originally intended. In recognition of this reduced time frame, the DEQ inspectors will not take enforcement actions in response to failure to comply with the owner/operator training and certification requirements until January 2, 2013. After that date, any facility found to be in non-compliance with the certification requirements will be subject to red-tagging.
DIRECT LINKS FOR UST EXAMINATION WEBSITE
Per the Rules, the International Code Council (ICC) is in charge of the Michigan-specific exam and certification. The direct links for the UST Certification examination are listed below:
NA-2009 Michigan Class A UST Operator - Content of examination
NB-2009 Michigan Class B UST Operator - Content of examination
Sample questions are available to help the candidates practice for the UST certification examinations.
TRAINING VERSUS EXAMINATION
Taking the training is a choice, depending on how comfortable the operator feels in being prepared to take the examination. The operator will still need to pass the appropriate ICC Michigan-specific UST operator examination in order to be considered a certified UST operator in Michigan. The operator may obtain training from qualified individuals in the corporation or take the training provided by outside vendors. Information on vendors that are providing the training in Michigan may be obtained by contacting your association.
For UST certification in Michigan, the applicant should select from the following Michigan-specific examinations:
The user should take care in selecting from the scroll-down list as the list includes non-Michigan-specific UST examinations.
Pearson Vue (the entity that manages the examination centers for ICC) will require you to create an account with them to register online, if you choose that route. The Pearson Vue web page will also have various help listings on the right hand side of the page where you can find helpful items such as: Locate a Test Center, Schedule a Test, Reschedule a Test, Cancel a Test, view your Account information, and contact Pearson Vue Customer Service.
SCHEDULING ON THE PHONE
To schedule via the phone use the toll free number 800-275-8301. For UST certification in Michigan, make sure to specify the examination code: "NA" for Michigan Class A UST operator and "NB" for Michigan Class B UST operator.
The Michigan test centers for the operator examination are at Lansing, Grand Rapids, Marquette and Southfield. There are also test centers in the bordering states. These test centers appear (with distance and map link) when you input your location on the screen "Find a Test Center."
The following reference materials are allowed to be used during the open book examination:
Only the above listed reference material will be allowed in the testing center. Additional information that you may bring with you is listed below:
Bound (original bound book, three-ring binder, or stapled)
Notes written in ink or highlighted in code sections
Permanently attached tabs (tabs that can't be removed without the page)
Pencil notes in your references that are highlighted prior to arrival test center
Photocopies of copyrighted materials are not allowed
NOTE: Make sure you review the ICC UST/AST Examination Information Bulletin available at the ICC website: www.iccsafe.org/ust-ast. This bulletin, on pages 17and 18, lists the items you can take into the exam room and the items you cannot take into the exam room as well as the Identification required to take the exam.
For general questions, please contact the Storage Tank Division at 517-241-8847.
For facility-specific questions, please contact the Hazardous Materials Storage Inspector that services your area, or Kevin Wieber, Storage Tank Division Manager at 517-241-8847, E-mail: RichardsonT14@michigan.gov.