HazCom and Global Harmonization System (GHS) Training

  • This training is required for all faculty, staff, and student employees working with hazardous chemicals in any setting, including university laboratories.
  • After viewing the slides, click on the link on the last slide to complete a quiz and registration form.
  • You must fill in all of the fields and submit the form in order to receive credit and documentation of this training for your records.

To view the slides on the SlideShare host website, click here:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Hazard Communication

For additional information:

What are the major changes to the Hazard Communication Standard?

The three major areas of change are in hazard classification, labels, and safety data sheets (SDS).
  • Hazard classification: The definitions of hazard have been changed to provide specific criteria for classification of health and physical hazards, as well as classification of mixtures. These specific criteria will help to ensure that evaluations of hazardous effects are consistent across manufacturers, and that labels and safety data sheets are more accurate as a result.
  • Labels: Chemical manufacturers and importers will be required to provide a label that includes a harmonized signal word, pictogram, and hazard statement for each hazard class and category. Precautionary statements must also be provided.
  • Safety Data Sheets: SDSs will now have a specified 16-section format.
Does the HazCom standard apply to office settings?
Office workers who encounter hazardous chemicals only in isolated instances are not covered by the rule. OSHA considers most office products (such as pens, pencils, adhesive tape) to be exempt under the provisions of the rule, either as articles or as consumer products. For example, OSHA has previously stated that intermittent or occasional use of a copying machine does not result in coverage under the rule. However, if an employee handles the chemicals to service the machine, or operates it for long periods of time, then the program would have to be applied.
What training requirements are included in the revision?
OSHA requires that employee HazCom training include at least the:
  • Methods and observations that may be used to detect the presence or release of a hazardous chemical in the work area (such as monitoring conducted by the employer, continuous monitoring devices, visual appearance or odor of hazardous chemicals when being released, etc.);
  • Physical, health, simple asphyxiation, combustible dust, and pyrophoric gas hazards, as well as hazards not otherwise classified, of the chemicals in the work area;
  • Measures employees can take to protect themselves from these hazards, including specific procedures the employer has implemented to protect employees from exposure to hazardous chemicals, such as appropriate work practices, emergency procedures, and personal protective equipment to be used; and
  • Details of the hazard communication program developed by the employer, including an explanation of the labels received on shipped containers and the workplace labeling system used by their employer; the safety data sheet, including the order of information and how employees can obtain and use the appropriate hazard information.
What training must be provided to employees by Dec. 1, 2013?
Training on label elements must include information on the type of information the employee would expect to see on the new labels, including the:
  • Product identifier;
  • Signal word;
  • Pictogram;
  • Hazard statement(s);
  • Precautionary statement(s); and
  • Name, address and phone number of the chemical manufacturer, distributor, or importer.
Training must also include how an employee might use the labels in the workplace. For example:
  • Explain how information on the label can be used to ensure proper storage of hazardous chemicals.
  • Explain how the information on the label might be used to quickly locate information on first aid when needed by employees or emergency personnel.
A general understanding of how the elements work together on a label. For example:
  • Explain that where a chemical has multiple hazards, different pictograms are used to identify the various hazards. The employee should expect to see the appropriate pictogram for the corresponding hazard class.
  • Explain that when there are similar precautionary statements, the one providing the most protective information will be included on the label.
Training on the format of the SDS must include information on:
  • Standardized 16-section format, including the type of information found in the various sections.
  • How the information on the label is related to the SDS.
How often must HazCom refresher training be given?
You must provide "effective" HazCom training to your employees at the time of their initial assignment and whenever a new physical or health hazard the employees have not previously been trained about is introduced into their work area. For example, if a new solvent is brought into the workplace, and it has hazards similar to existing chemicals for which training has already been conducted, then no new training is required. If the newly introduced solvent is a suspect carcinogen, and there has never been a carcinogenic hazard in the workplace before, then new training for carcinogenic hazards must be conducted for employees in those work areas where employees will be exposed.