The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has revised Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) through OSHA regulation changes, which concern the labeling of hazardous materials (HazMat) and chemicals.
Starting June 1, 2015, generators, importers, and handlers will be required to provide a more detailed label that includes a pictogram, product identification, supplier identification, signal word, and hazard and precautionary statements for hazardous materials and chemicals.
Here’s a breakdown of the required sections:
OSHA has chosen eight pictograms that can be used in this hazard category. According to their website, “Each pictogram consists of a symbol on a white background framed within a red border and represents a distinct hazard(s). The pictogram on the label is determined by the chemical hazard classification.”
The eight different pictograms include Health Hazard pictogram, Flame pictogram, Exclamation Mark pictogram, Gas Cylinder pictogram, Corrosion pictogram, Exploding Bomb pictogram, Flame Over Circle pictogram, Environment pictogram, and Skull and Crossbones pictogram.
Chemical name and four-digit UN code number, ID, or batch number.
This section should include the name, address, and telephone number of the supplier of the hazardous substance or material.
This is a new addition to the label, and should indicate the potential level of severity or hazard. Either “danger” or “warning” can be used, but not both. “Danger” warns of a higher level of hazard than “warning”.
Should explain the nature of the hazard in question.
Offers directions that should prevent (or minimize effects from) adverse effects resulting from exposure to, storage, or handling of hazardous materials.
Precautionary statements should include prevention, response, storage, and disposal directions.
This first compliance date goes into effect December 1, 2013, and requires employers to have trained their workers on the new labeling elements. Check out this other article on OSHA Compliance (OSHA Compliance: Quickly and Easily) if you want to learn more.
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