Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) Training Guide
OSHA HCS 2012 required employers to train their employees on the new GHS label elements and Safety Data Sheet format by December 1, 2013. This training applies to ALL US employers, including wholesalers, distributors and manufacturers, whose employees and chemical users may be exposed to hazardous chemicals.
Safety Data Sheets
The revised HCS requires manufacturer SDSs follow a uniform format, including section numbers, named headings, and associated information. Since May 2012, an increasing number of chemical manufacturers and distributors have begun to ship their products with SDSs that conform to the revised HCS. As such, it is critical that employers train their workers on the GHS elements and new SDS format soon. Chemical users should feel free to ask questions on the GHS label elements and SDSs to ensure their comprehension and understanding. Simply providing materials for them to read is insufficient.
OSHA HCS 2012 Labels
Under OSHA HCS 2012, chemical manufacturers and importers must label their chemical containers with the applicable GHS elements. In turn, employers must convey these GHS elements on the workplace label for each hazardous chemical. These GHS elements include:
- Signal Word:“Danger” or “Warning” indicates the severity of the hazard.
- GHS Pictograms: convey the health, physical and environmental hazard information assigned to a specified GHS hazard class and category.
- Health and Physical Hazard Statements: describe the nature and degree of the stated hazard.
- Precautionary Statements: describe measures to minimize or prevent effects from exposure or improper storage of the hazardous chemical.
Hazard Communication Standard Pictograms and Hazards
As of June 1, 2015, the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) requires pictograms on labels to alert users of the chemical hazards to which they can be exposed. 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.
OSHA HCS 2012 – Key Dates
Checklist for Compliance
Employers must ensure the most current supplier SDS for each chemical product used in the workplace is available to their employees and chemical users. Do NOT presume chemicals previously considered “non-hazardous” by the manufacturer remain so under OSHA HCS 2012.
Use the following checklist to help you comply with OSHA HCS 2012:
- Audit your chemicals: conduct a physical audit of all chemicals in the workplace
- Confirm the use of workplace labels: as you conduct your inventory, ensure all containers are properly labeled
- Obtain updated supplier SDSs: contact the manufacturer for a current SDS for each chemical in the workplace
- Distribute your supplier SDSs: ensure your chemical users have FREE, unlimited access to the updated SDSs
- Train your employees: update your existing hazardous chemical training program to include the GHS data elements and format of the SDS
The underlying purpose of OSHA Hazard Communication Standard 2012 is to reduce the incidence of injuries and illnesses. A better understanding of chemical hazards in the workplace will help reduce risks due to chemical exposure.
SDSpro offers a variety of products, software and services that take the hassle out of SDS management and Chemical Inventory Management, while still meeting regulatory and compliance standards. If you have any other questions about SDSpro, to include our products, compliance, data entry or other issues we may assist you with, please visit our FAQ section.
Try SDSpro FREE for 60 days.
Which version is right for you?
What Clients Are Saying
The Onsite Chemical Inventory Assessment Service is highly functional, technologically advanced and consistently exceeds our expectations! Their inventory team carefully executed physical and chemical audits to ensure we meet OSHA’s Right-to-Know Act in a cost-effective and efficient manner. We highly recommend SDSpro.
My positive experience with SDSpro can be summed up by the word “simplicity”. The program is easy to setup, utilize, and pull information from. We use a LAN and the SDSpro software works seamlessly producing high quality documents.
I can tell you that having the MDC/scanner is a blessing! For what it is designed for, in general, the MDC/Laser Barcode Scanner is a great tool to have. The device is user-friendly (simple to use), handy (not bulky), it has great storage capability, a time-saving device etc. I highly recommend this product!
SDSpro’s customer focus is evident and present throughout the entire process – from initial concept and sales discussions to implementation meetings, data entry, training and tech support have all been great. When help and support is needed, I am always sure to get a quick and effective response.
Northwest Aluminum Company has evaluated over 10 competitive MSDS packages. We found that MSDSpro has everything we needed, it was easy to train users and the Enterprise networking solution is the easiest to implement that we have found. It doesn’t take a computer “geek” or rocket scientist to implement MSDSpro. We are very satisfied.
Our experience with the MSDSpro software to date has been great. MSDSpro is user friendly, especially for the end users, and provides us an excellent vehicle for MSDS management. We have received excellent technical support from MSDSpro, and would recommend this product to anyone considering MSDS management software.
Once I saw your program, I told the other team members that this was the product to use, hands-down. Installation only took thirty minutes, as opposed to almost two hours for the others. Your program is also the only one that we came across that allowed us to use any type of scanner to import our own MSDS sheets. I think you have an awesome product.
After researching other SDS-managing software systems, SDSpro offered the easiest, most efficient, and comprehensive managing system and was much more reasonable in price. Not only am I more than satisfied with the software, but the people have been accessible, helpful, and friendly. When I purchased SDSpro, I also bought into a team who cared about my success.
The SDSpro team was extremely helpful, professional and knowledgeable (along with being very positive and cheerful) in their field. I can only say great things about this team and their completion of this particular task and would highly recommend them to anyone who is looking for a chemical audit solution.