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OSHA MODIFIES HCS AND IMPLEMENTS GHS

In August of this year, OSHA is expected to announce its plans to modify the current Hazard Communication Standard (HCS), and fully implement the UN Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). The reason for the change is to increase the quality and consistency of classifying and labeling all chemicals, on a global scale. Transitioning to GHS will make major changes that affect hazard classification, labels, SDS, and training.

Chemicals will have to be re-classified to reflect the appropriate hazards and warnings. Labels will include a signal word, pictogram, and hazard statement for each hazard class and category. Material Safety Data Sheets will just be called Safety Data Sheets (SDS), and will have to be re-authored or modified to fit the new 16-section format. Lastly, appropriate training will have to be given to ensure that workers recognize and understand the new formats.

With all the significant changes, a long transitional period is expected before enforcement begins. In addition, OSHA currently accepts GHS standards as being in compliance. With that in mind, you can start transitioning now and make sure the change happens as smoothly as possible. ChemTel is here to assist you by providing services that will make sure you are always in compliance with GHS. Some of our services include; re-authoring and managing SDS, creating labels, and advising on the GHS regulations.

More information about the GHS can be found at:

http://www.osha.gov/dsg/hazcom/ghs.html

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