Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 32.1. Health
Chapter 6. Environmental Health Services
1/20/2021

§ 32.1-244. Duty of operators to report knowledge of toxicity; retention and return of certain information; diagnosis of employee injuries and illnesses.

Each person who operates a commercial establishment that uses as a raw material, catalyst, final product or process solvent or manufactures any chemical or mixture in a manner that the person knows, or reasonably should know, is toxic and under the circumstances of its manufacture or use may pose a substantial threat to human health or to the environment shall have the affirmative duty to report that information to the Board within five days of receiving it.

In discharging this duty to report, each person shall have the further affirmative duty to make reasonable inquiry into the toxicity of any substance. Any knowledge of toxicity that is possessed by an employee or agent of the person, or by the holder of any patent under which the person is licensed to produce such substance, shall be attributed to that person if the person actually received that knowledge or, in the exercise of due diligence of such person, should have received that knowledge. Any knowledge of toxicity that is possessed by any consultant or independent contractor, who has been retained by the person to perform any evaluation or other task which involves any such substance, shall be attributed to the person if such person actually received that knowledge or, in the exercise of due diligence by such person, should have received that knowledge.

Except as provided in this section, the Board shall not require any reports by operators of commercial establishments to be filed pursuant to this article unless the Board can demonstrate that the report is necessary to prevent or lessen an imminent risk of injury to public health or the environment.

Each person who operates a commercial establishment in which any chemical is manufactured or is used as a raw material, catalyst, final product or process solvent shall direct each of his employees to a physician for diagnosis of any injury or illness of any kind whatever that the person knows, or reasonably should know, may be caused by such chemical. Nothing in this article shall be deemed, however, to authorize or require physical examination or medical treatment for any person who objects thereto on religious grounds.

The Department shall make reasonable efforts to return all confidential business information filed pursuant to this article to the owner or operator of the business that reported it; however, if the business no longer exists or the owner or operator cannot be located, the Department may retain the confidential information under the same terms and conditions of confidentiality existing prior to July 1, 1992, or, at the discretion of the Commissioner, purge and destroy such information.

Code 1950, § 32-435.1; 1977, c. 471; 1979, c. 711; 1982, c. 16; 1984, c. 433; 1992, c. 203.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.