U.S. GHS Implementation

The U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) has primary responsibility for implementing the GHS requirements for hazard classification, labeling, & SDS since these issues are currently regulated under OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard.

OSHA released a proposed revision to the U.S. Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) (29 CFR 1910, 1915, and 1926) on 30 September 2009 (74 FR 50280). The proposed modifications to the HCS includes:

  • Revised criteria for classification of chemical hazards;
  • New labeling provisions (including manditory use of standardized signal words, pictograms, hazard statements, & precautionary statements);
  • Required safety data sheet (SDS) format;
  • New definitions for terms;
  • Requirements for employee training;
  • Modifications to other OSHA standards (flammable and combustible liquids, process safety management, & substance-specific health standards).

The proposed rule has a three-year implementation timeframe during which either the existing HCS or the new GHS requirements may be used.  Training for all employees on the new GHS requirements would be required within two years of the rule becoming final.

 

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