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Training for GHS Implementation

On March 26th of 2012, OSHA finalized the new Hazard Communication standard which adopts the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals, or the GHS for short. One of the first steps in adopting the changes of the new rule is to properly train all of your employees. Every employee who works with or around hazardous chemicals in the workplace is required to be trained, even if they’ve had Hazard Communication training in the past. That’s right – every single employee must be trained again!

Two of the biggest changes to the HazCom standard that will affect employees are new labeling requirements and a new safety data sheet format. Therefore, the training you provide your employees with should focus on these. In addition to these two major elements, training should include the fundamentals of the Hazard Communication program, the requirements under the new standard, and a review of the hazards they may come into contact with at their place of work. You should also pay close attention to any new Safety Data Sheets that come in with your chemical shipments. Under the new classification system, there may be newly identified physical or health hazards that employees will need to be trained on.

Training on the new label elements and the new safety data sheet format must be completed by December 1, 2013. However, it wouldn’t hurt to complete the training sooner rather than later. Many chemical manufacturers are already using the new safety data sheet format and labels. Employees need to understand how to properly read and understand the labels and safety data sheets before they can work with those chemicals. Hazard Communication routinely shows up on OSHA’s most cited list. Make sure you avoid being fined by providing training on GHS implementation as soon as possible!


This information is provided as a service to you by Compliance Consultants, Inc.

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