Reporting Releases of Hazardous and Regulated Substances to the Environment

The United States Postal Service® must report hazardous and regulated material releases into the environment to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and state or local agencies. Additionally, Postal Service™ policy requires completion of PS Form 8187, Hazardous and Regulated Substance Release Notification, to internally report the release of these materials.

In general, spills must be reported if they reach:

n Stormwater,

n Sanitary sewer drains,

n Waterways,

n Soil,

n Groundwater, or

n Surface water.

The table shown here lists common reportable materials for Postal Service sites, which may trigger reporting requirements depending on the quantity released into the environment.

Examples of Reportable Hazardous and Regulated Materials



Motor oil

Heating oi

Grease (including cafeteria grease)


Used oil

Diesel fuel


Hydraulic fluid

Brake fluid

Mineral spirits

Transmission fluid

Gear oil



Petroleum Naphtha


Sulfuric acid

Propylene glycol

Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)

Friable asbestos




(R-12 Refrigerant)

Floor wax

Mineral spirits

De-Icing Products (e.g., calcium chloride, sodium chloride, calcium magnesium acetate)

Water treatment chemicals

Ethylene glycol (Antifreeze)

Diesel exhaust fluid (DEF)

Windshield washer fluid

As soon as any Postal Service employee knows a release to the environment has occurred, he or she must immediately contact the site installation head. The site installation head, or his or her designee, must do the following:

n Immediately report releases to the environment to the appropriate regional manager, Environmental Compliance and Sustainability, and the safety specialist (see

n Notify the appropriate federal, state, and local environmental agencies. Initial telephone notification and follow-up written reporting may be required. The applicable reporting requirements vary depending on location, and the type and quantity of the material released.

n Complete and submit PS Form 8187, Hazardous and Regulated Substance Release Notification.

For more information on this topic and other compliance requirements, check out the following resources:

n The Sustainability/Environmental Compliance site:

n The Standard Operating Procedure for Reporting Releases to the Environment and a spill reporting requirements table that outlines regulatory thresholds for each chemical:

n Environmental points of contact, including regional managers and supporting environmental field specialists: