In a webinar entitled 'Hazard Communication: Proposed Classification and Labeling Changes on the Way; How to Prepare,' Denese A. Deeds, CIH, discussed OSHA's Proposed Standard on hazard communication.
OSHA has proposed to modify the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) requirements under the existing Hazard Communication
Standard (HCS) to conform to the Safety Data Sheets (SDS) of the United Nations’ Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS).
Safety Data Sheets (SDS) have 16 section headings with required information for each section. OSHA will not enforce sections 12-15 that require information outside OSHA’s jurisdiction. Employers will have to review updated safety data sheets for changes in hazards and provide training for employees.
- Hazard(s) identification
- Classification of the chemical;
- Signal word, hazard statements, symbols and precautionary statements (hazard symbols may be graphics or name of symbol);
- Unclassified hazards;
- Unknown toxicity statement when 1% or more components has unknown toxicity 'X percent of the mixture consists of ingredients of unknown toxicity.'
- Composition/information on ingredients (requires percentage)
- First-aid measures
- Fire-fighting measures
- Accidental release measures
- Handling and storage
- Exposure control/ personal protection
- Physical and chemical properties
- Stability and reactivity
- Toxicological information
- Ecological information
- Disposal considerations
- Transport information
- Regulatory information
- Other information
The Proposed Standard has limited impact on employers who do not import/manufacture chemicals. There are no changes to the requirements of the written hazard communication program.
Denese A. Deeds, CIH, is co-founder of Industrial Health & Safety Consultants, Inc. of Woodbridge, Connecticut. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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