When it comes to ensuring the safe handling of potentially dangerous chemicals, communication is critical. Because of this, OSHA's Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) requires that any chemical manufacturer, distributor, or importer provide Safety Data Sheets (SDS) to communicate these hazards (OSHA, 29 CFR 1910.1200(g)).
SDSs are designed to be user-friendly and must communicate the properties of each chemical product, including: the physical, health, and environmental hazards; protective measures; and safety precautions for handling, storing and transporting the chemical.
Employers are required to ensure that SDSs are readily accessible to employees for all hazardous chemicals in their workplace. Furthermore, employees must have immediate access to the information within their work area, as well as access to SDS backups in the case of power outage or emergencies. Meeting these requirements can be cumbersome and time consuming. As a result, many organizations are turning to compliance management solutions to help meet the standards.
For instance, employees can quickly access digital SDS’s using mobile devices at point of operation, while management can use software to universally update all SDSs as information changes. Quick access to safety information makes all the difference in the handling, transportation, storage, and manufacture of the applicable chemical. In addition, inventory management is also important, as chemical quantities are constantly changing, and on-hand quantities can drastically impact hazards and the prevention procedures necessary.
The process of identifying chemicals present in the workplace requires advanced processes to ensure that information is available to stakeholders and is updated in real time. In today’s global operating environment, an SDS management solution is critical to guarantee compliance to multiple regulatory and legal requirements.
For more information on how Accupoint Software can help you manage your Safety Data Sheet program, please contact us today.