MSDS stands for Material Safety Data Sheet. An MSDS is a document that contains information related to a potentially hazardous material that is found in a given workplace. MSDS is sometimes referred to simply as SDS (Safety Data Sheet) or PSDS (Product Safety Data Sheet). No matter what acronym is used, these documents are important for ensuring a facility is as safe as possible. Any company that uses, creates, sells, ships, or stores any type of hazardous material will need to have an MSDS sheet on each of the materials that are used.
Are MSDS Necessary?
Having an MSDS on site for each hazardous material will help to ensure all the relevant information about the materials are available. Additionally, safety data sheets are required by OSHA standards as an important part of the Globally Harmonized System (GHS).
What Information is in a MSDS?
A material safety data sheet is a comprehensive document that contains just about all the information one could ever need related to a given material. The main focus is to make sure the material can be used or stored safely, which means there will be a lot of information about the specific hazards of the material, how to respond to accidents, what actions to take if someone is exposed to it, and more.
An MSDS is broken down into multiple different sections, each of which focuses on a different aspect of the material in question. The standard sections are identification, hazard identification, composition or information on the ingredients, first aid measures, firefighting measures, accidental release measures, handling and storage, exposure controls & personal protection, physical and chemical properties, stability and reactivity, toxicological information, ecological information, disposal considerations, transportation information, regulatory information, and other information.
Having these documents kept in one convenient location within the facility will allow emergency responders, safety professionals, and others to access them when they are needed. It is also important to note that employees have a right to review any safety data sheet they want so they can be as informed as possible about the hazards of working with a given material.
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