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Compliance Assistance & Pollution Prevention in New England

Automotive Repair and Auto Body Assistance Program

 EPA New England is seeking partnerships to provide outreach on new Clean Air Act (CAA) requirements impacting auto body shops that became effective January 10, 2011. We are eager to work with auto body shops, trade associations, vocational technical schools, paint vendors and other suppliers as well as states, municipalities, and community groups and others to provide information to any sources impacted by these new regulations. Please contact us to express your interest in organizing a workshop in your area. We can come to your events and provide materials and information as well as certification for spray technicians who receive classroom training on the requirements of the new CAA rule.

For more information, contact:

Roy Crystal (Crystal.Roy@epa.gov)

Tools to Help you Achieve Compliance with New CAA Requirements

Auto Body Shops – Important Compliance Dates:

  1. Existing Shops must be fully compliant with the new requirements set forth in 40 CFR 63, Subpart HHHHHH by January 10, 2011; new shops must be in compliance upon start-up.

  2. Initial Notification due January 11, 2010: Auto body shops in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont (EPA Region 1) must submit an Initial Notification to US Environmental Protection Agency Region I indicating that you have reviewed the requirements and the conditions at your shop and determined that you are subject to the requirements.

    Sample Initial Notification (PDF) (3 pp, 97 K, about PDF)

    Your Initial Notification must be mailed to:
  3. Attention: Air Clerk
    US Environmental Protection Agency – New England
    5 Post Office Square, Suite 100
    Mail code: OES04-2
    Boston, MA 02109-3912

  4. Compliance Notification due no later than March 11, 2011: Ideally compliance notifications should be submitted at the time of your Initial Notification. If you are not able to provide a statement indicating that you are in compliance at the time you submit your Initial Notification, you must submit your Compliance Notification no later than March 11, 2011.

    Sample form for Compliance Status Notification (PDF) (5 pp, 40 K, about PDF)

In addition to the dates above, the following is a summary of the requirements set forth by the new federal Clean Air Act requirements:

  • Painters that spray apply must be certified as having completed classroom and hands-on training in a) requirements set out in the new Rule (40 CFR 63, Subpart HHHHHH); and b) proper spray application of surface coatings, selection, set-up and maintenance of equipment (booths, filters, spray guns, gun cleaning equipment);
  • Spray painters must apply coatings in a spray booth, prep station, or mobile enclosure meeting certain requirements & use an HVLP spray gun or other approved technology;
  • Spray painters must prevent atomized mist and avoid spraying solvent or paint residue when cleaning spray guns;
  • Shops must keep records to demonstrate compliance (including copies of training certificates, materials to demonstrate usage of coatings and paint strippers containing methylene chloride, also known as dichloromethane, filter and booth maintenance information),

Please note: Review thoroughly. You can apply to be exempted from the new rule if you eliminate use of coatings containing chromium, lead, cadmium, nickel or manganese. If you use a product containing methylene chloride (also known as dichloromethane) to strip or remove paint, you are subject to additional requirements.

Facilities that do not use any of the five hazardous air pollutants (chromium, lead, cadmium, nickel or manganese) targeted for reductions by this Rule, may petition for exemption from this Rule by demonstrating that coatings are free of these metals.

Questions regarding exemptions or whether the regulation applies to an operation should be directed to our Regional Air Toxics Coordinator Susan Lancey at lancey.susan@epa.gov or (617) 918-1656. If you wish to submit a petition for exemption from the Rule, please send your petition for exemption from the Rule and documentation supporting your petition (e.g. a description of your coatings and certification statement) to:

Susan Lancey, Regional Air Toxics Coordinator
US Environmental Protection Agency – New England
5 Post Office Square, Suite 100
Mail Code: OEP05-2
Boston, MA 02109-3912

Training Video

Free 19 minute training video (Windows Media File) (59MB) starring NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon features testimonies from large and small shop owners and includes information on the Paint Strip Rule, best practices, saving money, worker protection, and outreach resources.


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