An SDS, or Safety Data Sheet, is a document that contains safety and health information about products and substances. SDS documents are an important aspect of jobsite safety when working with potentially hazardous chemicals or materials. This month’s Safety Corner breaks down what you should know about SDS.
What information do Safety Data Sheets contain?
The SDS includes information such as the properties of each chemical; the physical, health, and environmental health hazards; protective measures; and safety precautions for handling, storing, and transporting the chemical.
Why is it important to maintain SDS on a jobsite?
Employers and employees need the information contained on SDS documents to protect themselves from hazardous chemical exposures and to work safely with chemical products.
Proper SDS documentation is also an OSHA requirement, and OSHA may monitor or audit a jobsite for its SDS information.
What products require an SDS?
Any product that is considered a hazardous chemical requires a safety data sheet. A hazardous chemical, as defined by the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS), is any chemical which can cause a physical or a health hazard.
Who should have access to SDS documents?
From OSHA: The employer shall maintain in the workplace copies of the required safety data sheets for each hazardous chemical, and shall ensure that they are readily accessible during each work shift to employees when they are in their work area(s).
If you are unsure who on your team maintains and has access to SDS, ask your supervisor or shop manager.
Note: SDSsmart.com is the digital platform OSHA uses to track and audit SDS documents.
SDS maintenance is both critical for jobsite safety, and legally required, so it’s always best to verify your SDS documents are up to date.
Check out Triad Machinery’s Safety Corner blog series for more tips and info