The OSHA regulation changes to the Hazard Communication Standard will impact two major components of the standard. The two components that are addressed in the new standard are Safety Data Sheets and Labeling Requirements.
Safety Data Sheets
Under the old standard manufacturers were not required to follow any uniform format when developing a Safety Data Sheet. Therefore a section such as First Aid could be found in Section 2 or in the case of another manufacturer could be Section 4. In the past when looking for information the employee or management in many cases would have to read the complete Safety Data Sheet to find the information. Under the changes a uniform format will be followed. In the case of First Aid you should always find the information in Section 4 no matter who manufactured the chemical.
Labels will be changed and will now have pictograms, the product identifier, and a signal word to identify the level of hazard (Danger and/or Caution), precautionary statements, and supplier identification. Once the system is understood it will allow management and employees to quickly identify the hazard of the chemical, level of danger, and the product quickly without confusion.
For the manufacturer they are required to make changes to labels and safety data sheets by June 1, 2015. Since these changes can be implemented by the manufacture at any time company employees must receive training to understand the changes by 12/01/2013.
Should you need any assistance in providing training materials please contact John E. Quirk, CSP, AWANE Safety Consultant
E-Mail: John @AWANE.com
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