SDS – one sheet to manage all hazardous chemicals in the workplace

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What is a
 Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)

contains information on...
  • Potential health effects of exposure to chemicals
  • Other potentially dangerous substances
  • On safe working procedures when handling chemical products

Mandatory MSDS requirements

  • Review and revision of MSDS is necessary to at once in 2 years to make sure that the information is accurate and up to date latest regulations
  • Translation in native languages, especially in Europe
  • GHS building blocks

Why is Safety Data Sheet important?

Helps in making workplace safe and protects the environment

Contains information to help make a risk assessment as required by the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health regulations (COSHH).

Describe the hazards to assess the probability of risk arising in the workplace.

To help with COSHH risk assessments, HSE has developed simple step-by-step guidance, which starts with the information on the safety data sheet and ends with an explanation of how employers can best protect their workers.

Information in Material Safety Data Sheet

Material Safety Data sheet has information about specific chemical identity and common names. MSDS must provide information about:
  • Physical and Chemical Characteristic

  • Health Effects

  • Exposure Limits

  • Carcinogenicity (Cancer-causing)

  • Identification (name, address, telephone no) of the organization responsible for preparing the sheet

  • Must be readily accessible to employees in their work area

Safety Data Sheets Differ Significantly Between Countries

The Globally Harmonized System was created by the United Nations. There is a common GHS standards but there is no harmonization between countries. For example, currently the USA uses revision 3 and Canada uses revision 5. Every country follow different version this leads to a lack of harmonization between countries.

Region Format
Europe REACH Regulation / CLP Regulation
USA U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration’s (OSHA) Hazard Communication Standard
Japan JIS Z7250 – Japanese GHS SDS Standard
Rest of the world GHS – Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals

Challenges in preparing the SDS

  • 1

    GHS Hazard Class: There are 29 classes – which one to choose? Physical (17) | Health (10) | Environmental (2)

  • 2

    GHS Hazard Pictogram (9) – choosing a wrong pictogram can lead to millions of dollars in sues!

  • 3

    How to Classify Mixtures / Substance under GHS – a big challenge!

  • 4

    GHS Cut-off Value and Concentration Limits – GHS amends the values/phrases every 2 years.

  • 5

    Dangerous goods classes (9) and Packaging group (3) – inappropriate classes can lead to catastrophe during an emergency/accident, cost implications due to inadequate packaging!

  • 6

    GHS Hazard and Precautionary Statement List – a wrong statement can lead to wrong conclusions!

  • 7

    Correlation with section 2 and section 14.

APA has Practical Experience in mitigating all these challenges.

What we can do – SDS and Label

  • Authoring of SDS end to end

  • Creation of label

  • SDS preparation in different format based on every region

  • Guidance on Regulatory work (Registration for BPR, REACH), Safety checks, etc.

  • Keeping customers and suppliers updated with amendments or changes in Regulation, classification, pictogram, H and P phrases

  • Auditing suppliers and if needed, making them SDS compliant by reviewing to find what all corrections are needed

Keep SDS ready and employees safe.

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Does my product need a Safety Data Sheet?

If your product is classified as hazardous or contains specific hazardous ingredients then you must have a SDS for that product.

Does APA create SDS and Label in local languages?

Yes! With the help of software we can translate the SDS content into local languages.

How does APA gather updates on regulation, when any amendment is made?

APA team member regularly visit govt website and authorised website and keep an eye on the current regulation, if any changes happen then APA will inform the customer.

What are the inputs required to be shared with APA to execute the SDS ?

APA requires 100% composition and physical-chemical data to create SDS.

Can APA supress the classification on SDS according to our requirement, if that classification is not that necessary?

Yes! According to customer requirement we can supress the classification, but if the classification is hazardous and present in higher quantity then we recommend to show this hazard classification on SDS.

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