Msds Regulations

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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MSDS regulations can be extensive, and it's your job as a business owner to familiarize yourself with even the lesser-known laws. An MSDS is your one-stop report on the chemical compounds you handle daily as a manufacturer or distributor, and there are dozens of rules and regulations that apply to their use. By and large, MSDS are not designed for individual consumers but those whose exposure to the materials in question is routine, as well as those supervising the workers being exposed.

This means that everyone from building contractors to machinists need to be up to speed on MSDS regulations. Even though it's an employer's responsibility to provide his or her workers with information and training, it is incumbent upon the workers to retain that knowledge and to know where to look if a question arises. Under these protocols, OSHA is able to save thousands of lives in the workplace every year.

The Specifics of MSDS Regulations

OSHA requires that MSDS be included with every chemical material in your shop, whether they're toxic or nontoxic. This extends to the fire extinguishers you place around your plant, for each of them contains chemicals and gases requiring their own specific MSDS. If you have two identical chemicals produced by two different companies, then each one needs its own MSDS nonetheless.

It is also OSHA's policy that all MSDS be kept in an office rather than the plant itself. There must not be any barriers, physical or otherwise, between an employee and the MSDS, so that he or she can find it in an emergency. And generic MSDS do not fit with OSHA regulations; every substance requires its own specific sheet, even if several materials fall under one umbrella heading. These are just a few examples of regulations that OSHA enforces and that, if left unenforced, can lead to heavy fines or even plant closure.

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