OSHA is changing its standards and you need to know about these changes.
OSHA, or the Occupational Safety Health Administration, is a government agency that is responsible for ensuring safe working conditions for employees. The changes include updates to the Hazard Communication Program that all employers are required to have in place so that all employees will have access to information about hazardous materials stored at the work site.
Here is a summary of a few of the changes to the Hazard Communication Program:
- MSDSs, or Material Safety Data Sheets, will be called SDSs, or Safety Data Sheets.
- The format of SDSs has changed. All SDSs must use the same format going forward.
- Chemical manufacturers must provide a label for the chemical that includes specific elements, including a pictogram and hazard statement.
- All employees must be trained on the new SDS format and new label elements by December 1, 2013.
If you’re an employer, you will need to update your SDS sheets as they become available and train your employees on the new label elements and SDSs.
This is a not a comprehensive update. For detailed or more specific information on your responsibilities relating to these changes, you can visit OSHA.gov or seek professional assistance.