The New Hazcom Standard
Will Your Workplace be Safety Compliant by the December 1, 2013 Deadline?
As of December 1, 2013, OSHA—the Occupational Safety and Health Administration—is requiring workplaces nationwide to have employees trained on the newly issued Hazard Communication Standard (HCS), also known as the Hazcom Standard. The deadline is to be the first in a series of phase-in effective dates required under the revision.
As an employer, if your company handles hazardous chemicals and/or toxic substances, you will be receiving newly compliant labels and safety data sheets—which are consistent with the United Nations’ Globally Harmonized System. Training is recommended early, as employees are already seeing the new labels and safety data sheets popping up in the workplace.
The training involves ensuring employees understand and know how to read the updates being made primarily in the following areas:
- Hazard classification
- Chemical labels
- Safety Data Sheets (SDS)
The new chemical labels are said to be more user friendly than their predecessors—thus minimizing the margin of error for chemically hazardous accidents in the workplace.
For a side-by-side comparison of the current and newly revised Hazcom Standard, you can access the OSHA’s webpage here: http://www.osha.gov/dsg/hazcom/index.html.
The site also features QuickCards (in both English and Spanish) and briefs to assist you with the required training, as well as further information on training requirements.
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