On March 26, OSHA published its final rule aligning its Hazard Communication Standard with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals, or GHS — a worldwide effort to standardize criteria for classifying chemical hazards, labeling and safety data sheets. The effective date of the final rule is 60 days after the date of publication.
Organizations preparing to transition to GHS will need to rewrite their SDS (or MSDS) to the new format; the amount of work this represents has been estimated by experts to approach 100 percent of current SDS. Employees will need to be retrained to the new SDS, and where to find them; containers must be relabeled.
View a side by side comparison of Hazard Communication Standard, 1910.1200, as published in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) on March 11, 1994; herein referred to as HCS 1994, and the final rule revising the Hazard Communication Standard to be consistent with the United Nations Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (herein referred to as the HCS 2012). For additional information, read the press release, access this Fact Sheet or the quick cards.