Federal and state regulations require all owners/operators of underground storage tanks (USTs) to designate at least one certified Class A, B and C Operator for each tank system.
Guide MassDEP UST Operator Certification Program
UST Owner/Operator Responsibilities
If you own or operate one or more UST systems, you must:
- Designate at least one certified Class A, B and C Operator for each UST system.
- Document that each designated Class A, B or A/B Operator is correctly trained on the UST system(s) for which s/he is responsible.
- Document that each Class C Operator has received site-specific training from a Class A, B or A/B Operator.
Operator Classes & Qualifications
- Class A Operator may be the owner/operator, an employee or a contractor with general knowledge and understanding of the UST system(s) for which s/he is designated the operator, as well as the federal and state regulatory requirements that apply to the system(s).
- Class B Operator may be the owner/operator, an employee or a contractor with in-depth knowledge and understanding of the UST system(s) for which s/he is designated the operator, and how to operate and maintain the system(s), as well as the federal and state regulatory requirements that apply to the system(s).
- Class A/B Operator must meet the requirements for both Class A and Class B Operator.
- Class C Operator is an on-site employee who is trained by a Class A, B or A/B Operator on UST system(s), emergency procedures, and response to alarms at the facility.
To become a MassDEP-certified Class A, B or A/B UST Operator, you must:
- Take and pass a state-administered Class A, B, A/B or Reciprocity UST Operator Exam (Note: exams are "open book" and technical support is available at all times);
- Receive a MassDEP-issued certificate indicating your UST Operator class;
- Be designated by the facility owner as the responsible UST Operator; and
- Obtain training on the type(s) of UST system (s) for which you have been designated an Operator.
To become a Class C Operator, you do not need to take and pass a state-administered exam, but you must receive site-specific training from a Class A, B or A/B Operator on the UST system(s) for which you will be responsible, including how to respond to alarms and emergencies.
Additional Resources for Operator Classes & Qualifications
Study for Your Exam
Before taking a Massachusetts Class A, B, A/B or Reciprocity Underground Storage Tank (UST) Operator Certification Exam, you will need to know and thoroughly understand the following 12 subject areas:
- Corrosion Protection
- Emergency Response Procedures
- Financial Responsibility, Registration & Notification
- General Definitions
- General Requirements
- Leak Detection
- Operator Training Requirements
- Product Compatibility & Regulated Substances
- Reporting & Record Keeping Requirements
- Spill & Overfill Prevention
- Tanks & Piping
- UST Testing Requirements
To be sure you have the knowledge and understanding you need to pass a UST Operator Certification Exam, please carefully review the materials in Additional Resources below, and either print them out or bookmark them in your web browser so you can consult them as you take your exam.
Additional Resources for Study for Your Exam
Select the Exam for Your Operator Class
UST Operator Class
Number of Exam Questions
Allotted Running Time
3 Hours (180 Minutes)
3 Hours (180 Minutes)
4 Hours (240 Minutes)
2 Hours (120 Minutes)
Key Actions for Select the Exam for Your Operator Class
Register & Take Your Exam
Visit the exam web site and follow the prompts to complete your registration and payment steps.
- There is a $75 exam fee.
- If you are a certified in another state, you will need to take and pass the applicable Massachusetts exam.
- No one other than the UST Operator logging into the system may take the exam or answer the questions.
Key Actions for Register & Take Your Exam
After You Finish Your Exam
The results of your Class A, B, A/B or Reciprocity Underground Storage Tank (UST) Operator Exam - including your performance in each subject area and your overall score - will be displayed immediately after you answer the last question or you run out of time.
Be sure to print the results screen as documentation of your performance on the exam, as you will not be able to retrieve it later.
If you passed your exam, MassDEP will email you the appropriate Operator Certificate within roughly one month.
If you need to re-take an exam, you will need to pay the $75 fee each time. If you take and fail any combination of exams three (3) times in a row, you will have to wait six (6) months from the date of your third failure before attempting to take any exam again.
Maintain Your Operator Status
Once MassDEP issues you a UST Operator Certificate:
- Your certification belongs to you, not your employer.
- There are no re-certification requirements.
- You will be qualified to train Class C UST Operators.
- If you change jobs but will still be responsible for UST systems, your new employer will need to designate you a Class A, B, A/B or C UST Operator, as appropriate, and document that you have the necessary training.
- If the type of UST system(s) for which you are responsible changes, you may need to obtain additional training on the new system, but will not need to take another exam.