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This analysis describes the requirements of safety data sheets (SDS) under OSHA’s hazard communication standard—or HazCom. The SDS is at the heart of federal HazCom, and any employer with employees exposed or potentially exposed to hazardous chemicals must comply. The SDS is a detailed, written description of a hazardous chemical. It is the primary source of information about hazardous chemicals for employers and their workers, and contains comprehensive technical information about a particular chemical and explains the hazards, precautions, and remedies to human exposure.

For related resources and training materials, refer to the following topics:

  • Hazard Communication for information about OSHA’s Hazard Communication standard, including GHS revisions
  • Labels for information about HazCom labeling requirements

Looking for a specific SDS? Your subscription to includes access to SDS Search—a database with millions of SDSs that you can easily find, save, and print off.

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Questions & Answers If a subcontractor provides site specific Material Safety Data Sheets for chemicals that will be on the construction site does the MSDS have to be the latest revision? 07/23/2013National
Directives 03/27/1986 - CPL 2-2.39 - Sample Material Safety Data Sheet 07/18/2003National
Interpretations A centralized repository for the electronic collection and dissemination of MSDSs [1910.1200] 10/21/1997National
Interpretations A description of a retailer's responsibilities regarding material safety data sheets (MSDSs) and training under the HCS. (1910.1200) 09/28/1994National
Interpretations Alleged deficiencies contained on a material safety data sheet (MSDS) for a spray-on insulation product (the Icynene Insulation System) [1910.1200; 1910.1200(g)(1); 1910.1200(g)(2)] 01/14/2009National
Interpretations Alleged deficiencies on an MSDS for one of Icynene's insulation products. 02/27/2009National
Interpretations Applicability of the HCS to office workers and copy machine operators [1910.1200] 03/31/1989National
Interpretations Applicability of the Laboratory Standard; MSDS and labeling requirements [1910.1450(a); 1910.1200(g); 1910.1200(f)(1)] 05/28/1999National
Interpretations Applicability of the requirements of the Hazard Communication Standard to rubber dust byproduct sold by tire recapping company [1910.1200] 08/15/1991National
Interpretations Application of the Hazard Communication Standard to prescription drug products [1910.1200] 06/20/1989National
Interpretations Application of the Hazard Communication standard to waste oils [1910.1200] 06/17/1986National
Interpretations Application of the HCS MSDS requirements to distributors selling hazardous chemicals to consumers and employers [1910.1200] 05/16/1990National
Questions & Answers Are companies required to update their MSDSs every 2 years? If not, when? 05/25/2011National
Questions & Answers Are field service technicians required to have the MSDS for the cleaners lubes and so on in their service vehicle? 07/13/2009National
Questions & Answers Are we required to have an SDS on packaged power tool supplies i.e. drill-bits, cutters, taps etc? 09/21/2015National
Questions & Answers Are we required to keep only the most current version of an MSDS? 11/19/2009National
Questions & Answers Are we required to maintain an MSDS for charged fire extinguishers? We are not refilling the fire extinguishers and do not store any of the dry chemical powder used for refilling. 10/14/2009National
Interpretations Availability of MSDSs on Construction Sites [1926.59; 1910.1200(e)(2); 1910.1200(g)(8)] 05/16/1990National
Handouts Benefits of the GHS and SDS  National
Questions & Answers By regulation, do our stores have to have a physical SDS Binder or is it acceptable to have the files on a shared computer network drive that all stores can access at any time? 03/30/2023National
Questions & Answers Can we have a separate MSDS binder for a specific work area (ie printing press)? We would maintain our master list and this area list, but not have to include the lists in all the other MSDS stations in the plant. 02/22/2008National
Questions & Answers Can we replace our hard copy MSDS file with a link that our employees could use to access the file on a computer? We would have laptops in case of a loss of power. 02/21/2008National
Interpretations Chemical suppliers must ensure downstream flow of hazard information (MSDSs) [1910.1200(g)] 04/21/1999National
Interpretations Clarification of Material Safety Data Sheet Requirements Under the Hazard Communication Standard [1910.1200] 10/09/1987National
Interpretations Clarification of Material Safety Data Sheet Requirements Under the Hazard Communication Standard [1910.1200] 06/10/1988National
Interpretations Clarification of OSHA's Hazard Communication Standard with regards to the carcinogenicity of wood dust [1910.1200] 10/11/1995National
Interpretations Clarification of systems for electronic access to MSDSs. 02/18/1999National
Interpretations Clarification of the definition of a hazardous chemical and the requirements for Material Safety Data Sheets [1910.1200] 05/15/1997National
Interpretations Clarification of the requirement to provide accurate and current hazard information on an MSDS [1910.1200; 1910.1200(g)(2)(xi)] 04/18/2008National
Interpretations Clarification on effective date of SDSs replacing MSDSs [1910.1200] 06/13/2014National
Interpretations Clarification on labeling and SDS requirements under HCS 2012 [1910.1200] 01/31/2013National
Interpretations Compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) and the requirement for Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS).[1910.1200] 03/24/1995National
Interpretations Concerning the conditions under which material data safety sheets are required [1910.1200] 06/14/1990National
Interpretations Consumer products that contain hazardous chemicals [1910.1020; 1910.1200] 05/28/1996National
Interpretations Distribution of Material Safety Data Sheets [1910.1200(g)(6)] 06/24/1996National
Questions & Answers Do items such as suggested in the first list, require SDS? If they do, then, are we required to carry in our backpacks, an SDS for each chemical we use regularly in the field? 02/10/2014National
Questions & Answers Do we need to have an SDS on site for items in our first aid kits and/or medications like aspirin? 11/13/2019National
Questions & Answers Do you need a SDS sheet for Sun TanLotion used by employees? 10/06/2014National
Questions & Answers Do you need SDS sheet for toner used in copy printers in offices? 10/06/2014National
Questions & Answers Do you need to keep an SDS on hand for each stain color if they are all the same brand? 11/05/2019National
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