Here are the questions I’ve been hearing in regards to the MSDS changes with respect to the new GHS (globally harmonized system of classification & labeling of chemicals)…

I am going to keep the answers REALLY short so you’ll actually read it. Keep in mind, I’m leaving some information out.

  • What do I need to do?

As an employer you need to train your employees on how the new MSDS will look.

  • How soon do I need to comply?

For contractors, you’ll need to train your employees by Dec 1, 2013.

  • What is it?

It’s a universal (global) method to make MSDS have more information and make them all look the same.

  • Why are they doing this?

Well, MSDS’s are very good. They’re supposed to be written with the same 15 sections with no-blanks. But, some people don’t do a very good job. Or, in some cases, do an really good job of hiding harmful chemicals, but, legally cover themselves.

  • Where can I get help? Right now?!

There will be FREE training (you may have to search for it though) and more information being published. This is a topic you can learn and present to your employees. Since the deadline is a year and 9 months away, you have some time.

  • Ok, do you have any places for additional information?
Yep. Federal OSHA has a fact sheet.  EHS Today has an article. OSHA has a guide. AIHA press release.
  • Is there information in spanish?

OSHA has some info here.