Explosives Rulemaking

Man wearing hard hat, gloves and eye protection carries a box of explosives next to a truck with a sign labeled 'explosives'

Background

This chapter details the requirements for the manufacture, possession, storage, selling, purchase, transportation, and use of explosives or blasting agents.

Explosives and blasting agents are used in many industries: mining, quarrying, construction and demolition, avalanche control, manufacturing, firefighting, local and state law enforcement, entertainment industry, pyrotechnics (fireworks), logging, agriculture, and even medicine to fracture kidney and gall stones.

Many sections of the chapter have not been updated in 10 to 30 years. Changes are needed to reflect current industry best practices and align with federal regulations.

L&I formed an Explosives Safety Stakeholder Group (ESSG) in 2017 in cooperation with explosives industry, government and law enforcement leaders. It is an advisory group for L&I regarding explosives safety, policy, and procedures in Washington. The mission of the ESSG is simple: Keep Washington safe and working — with explosives.

The group meets annually, except during times of code revision (quarterly then). The goal of bringing representatives from business, labor, and state entities, to name a few, is to develop recommendations to update the current occupational explosives standards; and, provide a safe and healthy environment for employees.

L&I filed a preproposal (CR-101) (41 KB PDF) with the Washington State Code Reviser January 23, 2018, to officially begin the rulemaking process. We are currently working with the ESSG Stakeholder Group to determine the scope of our proposed rule changes and will continue working with the group as we begin drafting proposed rule language.

Stakeholder meetings and Public Hearings will continue to occur. Meetings are open to the public and will include representatives from business, labor, and government. Meeting dates and locations will be posted on this page.

Explosives Safety Stakeholder Group (ESSG) meetings

The department will hold a half-day meeting in December at the Bellingham Labor and Industries location to discuss new language specific to aerial blasting (only). Please check this web page in November for the meeting date and draft language specific to aerial blasting.

Previous meeting reports

Rulemaking activity

Rules and laws

Washington State

Federal

L&I procedures and enforcement guidance

Other agencies with explosives jurisdiction

Other resources

Get updates via email

An email list has been set up for L&I to share information about this workgroup and the meetings. Select the "Explosives Rulemaking" topic when you sign up to receive email updates.

Please contact Cathy Coates with any rulemaking questions: Cathy.coates@lni.wa.gov or 360-902-5432.

Please contact Dan Massey with any technical questions about this rule: Daniel.Massey@lni.wa.gov or 360-902-5569.

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