The start of 2015 marks the approach of a major deadline for chemical manufacturers under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. After years of review of the standards and practices for labeling chemicals, the new policy will take effect starting June 1, 2015.
All chemicals sold, shipped and produced after that date are required to submit to a standardized labeling process. According to OSHA, all chemical labels must contain the following:
- Name, Address and Telephone Number. This information will allow individuals to contact and identify the source of potentially hazardous materials.
- Product Identifier. Clearly stating the contents of a container prevents confusion and misunderstanding.
- Signal Word. OSHA recognizes "danger" and "warning" as the two official signal words for labels. "Danger" indicates a highly hazardous material while "warning" signifies a lower risk chemical.
- Hazard Statement(s). "Causes damage to kidneys through prolonged or repeated exposure when absorbed through the skin," is an example of an acceptable hazard statement, per OSHA.
- Precautionary Statement(s). These include measures for safe handling, storage and other considerations.
- Pictogram(s). Visual aides indicate the chemical information in an unmistakable, striking format.
While some chemical manufacturers have adhered to these standards for a long time, OSHA's new regulations will standardize the information and also streamline safety data sheets that correspond to certain materials. Companies in the industry should consider industrial label printers to ensure their materials are labeled in compliance with OSHA regulations.
While the June deadline is almost six months away, the organization encourages companies to begin the transition sooner, which can be made easy with the right equipment. Don't wait to update your labeling procedure. At Durafast, we offer a range of printers that will help chemical companies meet the new standards without interruption.