Safety Data Sheets Under Globally Harmonized System (GHS)
Under the new Global Harmonization System (GHS) ruling, material safety data sheets (MSDS), will then be referred to as Safety Data Sheets (SDS). The new standards affect any workplace that manufactures uses, transports, or stores hazardous chemicals. One specific change in this ruling is to the ANSI Standardized MSDS format.
On June 1 of 2015, the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) will require all modifications to safety data sheets to be uniform and in compliance with new format requirements.
To match the Hazard Communication Standard, the safety data sheets must have all 16 sections.
*Sections 12-15, while mandatory, OSHA will not be enforcing them as they fall outside of OSHA jurisdiction.
The 16 sections of new Global Harmonization System SDS format are:
1. Identification of the supplier and substance/mixture
- GHS product identifier
- Other means of identification
- Recommended use of the chemical and restrictions on use
- Supplier’s details (including name, address, phone number, etc.)
- Emergency phone number
- GHS classification of the substance/mixture and any national or regional information.
- GHS label elements, including precautionary statements. (Hazard symbols may be provided as a graphical reproduction of the symbols in black and white or the name of the symbol, e.g., flame, skull and crossbones.)
- Other hazards which do not result in classification (e.g., dust explosion hazard) or are not covered by the GHS
3. Composition/Information on Ingredients Substance
- Chemical identity
- Common name, synonyms, etc.
- CAS number, EC number, etc.
- Impurities and stabilizing additives which are themselves classified and which contribute to the classification of the substance
- The chemical identity and concentration, or concentration ranges, of all ingredients which are hazardous within the meaning of the GHS and are present above their cutoff levels
4. First Aid Measures
- Description of necessary measures, subdivided according to the different routes of exposure, i.e., inhalation, skin and eye contact, and ingestion
- Most important symptoms/effects, acute and delayed
- Indication of immediate medical attention and special treatment needed, if necessary
5. Firefighting Measures
- Suitable (and unsuitable) extinguishing media
- Specific hazards arising from the chemical (e.g., nature of any hazardous combustion products)
- Special protective equipment and precautions for firefighters
6. Accidental Release Measures
- Precautions, personal protective equipment (PPE), and emergency procedures
- Environmental precautions
- Methods and materials for containment and cleaning up
7. Handling and Storage
- Precautions for safe handling
- Conditions for safe storage, including any incompatibilities
8. Exposure Controls/Personal Protection
- Control parameters, e.g., occupational exposure limit values or biological limit values
- Appropriate engineering controls
- ndividual protection measures, such as personal protective equipment
9. Physical and Chemical Properties
- Appearance (physical state, color, etc.).
- Odor threshold
- Melting point/freezing point
- Initial boiling point and boiling range
- Flash point
- Evaporation rate
- Flammability (solid, gas)
- Upper/lower flammability or explosive limits
- Vapor pressure
- Vapor density
- Relative density
- Solubility (is)
- Partition coefficient: n-octane/water
- Auto-ignition temperature
- Decomposition temperature
10. Stability and Reactivity
- Chemical stability
- Possibility of hazardous reactions
- Conditions to avoid (e.g., static discharge, shock or vibration).
- Incompatible materials
- Hazardous decomposition products
11. Toxicological Information
Concise but complete and comprehensible description of the various toxicological (health) effects and the available data used to identify those effects, including:
- Information on the likely routes of exposure. (inhalation, ingestion, skin and eye contact);
- Symptoms related to the physical, chemical and toxicological characteristics.
- Delayed and immediate effects, and also chronic effects, from short and long term exposure.
- Numerical measures of toxicity (such as acute toxicity estimates).
12. Ecological Information*
- Ecotoxicity (aquatic and terrestrial)
- Persistence and degradability
- Bioaccumulative potential
- Mobility in soil
- Other adverse effects
13. Disposal Considerations*
- Description of waste residues and information on their safe handling and methods of disposal, including the disposal of any contaminated packaging
14. Transport Information*
- UN Number
- UN proper shipping name
- Transport Hazard Class
- Packing group, if applicable
- Marine pollutant (Yes/No)
- Special precautions which a user needs to be aware of or needs to comply with in connection with transport either within or outside site premises
15. Regulatory Information*
- Safety, health and environmental regulations specific for the product in question
16. Other Information
Including other information on preparation and Revision of the Safety Data Sheets under the new Global Harmonization System ruling, labels and Safety Data Sheets will follow a more standardized format and contain a greater number of prescribed elements based on the chemical’s classification. Formulators of mixtures will no longer be able to prepare a Safety Data Sheet by attaching component, or complimentary Safety Data Sheets to a cover sheet; they must now provide a new Safety Data Sheet for the mixture itself.
Learn more about hazard identification.