Understanding Safety Data Sheets
GHS means Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals It approaches the hazard communication at an international level. It provides a basis for chemical hazards classification. It also provides an approach in elements labeling routines and safety data sheets. Communication experts from all over the world standardized and outlined the system. international organizations and different stakeholders also participated in this process. It was integrated with other existing standards from other systems in the world.
GHS is also referred to as the purple book. Standardized order of information on safety data sheets is a component of the document. Another component of the document is the systemization criteria for health, physical and environmental threats that can be caused by the chemicals. also, it also has the criteria for standardized label elements that are assigned to these hazard classes and categories. Further, the basis for standardized label elements assigned to hazard categories and descriptions are a part of the document. As a result, the document, therefore, has appropriate signal words, pictorials and hazard and precautionary statements which can be used to communicate effectively on hazards to the users.
Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) is the former name for Safety Data Sheet (SDS). The main reason for changing the term was to accommodate the information gotten from different countries. Improving the information received from different countries is the main reason for the name change. The standardization of labels and SDSs is important because it enhances information received from and exported to other countries. GHS and these international standards are important because they will help reduce problems caused by the many international and national standards and requirements for chemicals classification and their labeling. Hence, better global communication is enhanced.
Material Safety Data Sheet contains the information entailing a certain substance. Procedures for handling the substances safely are conveyed to the users by the SDS. in a working environment, SDS are a requirement for safety and product stewardship. Data and information in the SDSs include physical data, health effects, toxicity, storage and safe disposal.
SDS should be readily available where the chemical substances are used.In this case, storage safety and spill-handling procedures of these substances are enhanced. Generic users are not the only ones that the SDS should be designed for. The design should be such that any person that comes into contact with the chemicals should be in a position to understand the hazards and the components of the chemical substances. This is most important for everyone working in confined spaces. Safety in these working places becomes enhanced as a result.
How these SDSs are managed is very crucial. Some companies have opted to adopt the different software that have been developed by different individuals. To be on a safer side, it is important if the parties involved make sure that these soft wares meet the GHS standards before adopting these soft wares.