- Hazard Classification: Definitions of hazard now include specific criteria for classifying health and physical hazards as well as classification of mixtures. It will result in more accurate safety data sheets.
- Labels: Chemical manufacturers, importers and distributors must use labels that include a harmonized signal word, pictograms and hazard statement for each hazard class and category. Precautionary statements must also be provided.
- Safety Data Sheets: Now have a specific 16-section standardized format.
You now have less than a year to get in compliance with these regulations, and if you fail to do so you can be subject to fines and other penalties. According to OSHA, the deadline for compliance is June 1, 2016. Employers need to have all their workplace labeling procedures in place and the employees trained by this date in order to avoid problems.
The chemical labeling requirements are fairly specific so it is a good idea to learn about them as soon as possible.
The diagram below shows an example of the main elements of a GHS label.
- Product Identifier – This will identify what the product in the container is. Should match the product identifier on SDS.
- Signal Word – Signal words like ‘CAUTION’ or ‘WARNING’ need to be in large print. These Indicate relative severity of hazard
- Hazard Statement – A statement describing the specific hazard is for the materials within the container.
- Pictogram – Symbols to convey health, physical and environmental information
- The pictograms help improve visual communication and allow people to quickly understand the risk even if they can’t read the print on the label. This is important when viewing containers from some distance away.
- Identifier - Name, address, telephone number of supplier
- Precautionary Statement – This statement will let people know what measures they should take when working with this hazardous material to minimize / prevent effects of the hazard, including First Aid. Things like wearing gloves or respiratory equipment can be mentioned here.
To aid in compliance
Avery has created a new line of UltraDutyTM GHS chemical labels to simplify the labeling update process. As their name suggests, these labels are tough and can withstand chemicals, UV light, water, and extreme temperatures. The adhesive used on the labels is marine-grade, and the labels passed the 90-day sea-water submersion test. In addition, the labels are tear- and scuffresistant, so frequent use will not compromise their integrity.
Avery also makes the label customization and printing process easier and more efficient with its Design & Print GHS Online Wizard, which is provided at no cost. This online application allows users to create customized, professional GHS-compliant labels from templates and print them in-house with a desktop printer. Using Avery’s labels and the GHS Online Wizard not only guarantees that users will be compliant with OSHA’s GHS standards, but it also helps employees identify and track chemicals, and helps companies comply with other labeling standards.
Want to know more about regulatory requirements for your organization? You've come to the right place. Get information about GHS, workplace safety and proper labeling information here. For additional information, click here.