Aims of the GHS Safety Data Sheets.
Many countries in the world use the United Nation’s globally harmonized system of labeling and sorting out chemicals. This is done to attain some objectives.
One aim of doing this is protecting the health of workers who process, store and transport chemicals. Another aim of this is to safeguard the environment. A common classification enables the proper identification of chemicals and an indication of their hazardous levels. Initially, some countries had no methods of classification. The countries that had classification systems classified their chemicals in a different way than others. As a result, this led to a lot of confusion in handling chemicals and imposing risky situations.
GHS safety data sheets were made after a considerable study. The study aimed at addressing the differences in classification. It aimed at unifying the classification an as well as the categorization while ensuring that the protection levels were still high.
The classification takes into account the intrinsically hazardous properties of individual chemicals and their formulation. It also considers the chemical’s reactivity with air, water as well as other chemicals. GHS SWDS hence aims at protecting the user as well as the people who are in the production, storage and transportation of the chemical. GHS went through various revisions over years. GHS provides that the hazard must be disclosed fully disregarding the confidential information or proprietary formulations. This is an essential feature especially when training employees how to use SDS and the correct procedures about the handled chemicals and safety labels.
When an importer or distributor receives sealed chemical containers, they should ensure that the labels remain intact. If the container is open, the manufacturer should ensure that the data sheets are readily available to the workers who handle this chemical.
GHS has no uniform testing method. it relies on the tests that are conducted by internationally accepted agencies. Such agencies include OECD or WHO. The information is usually about health and environmental hazards. It refers to UNSCETDG tests for physical hazards such as explosives and flammability. GHS makes use of the data available. When new data come in place, it also incorporates it. Manufacturers and distributors should therefore keep these changes in mind. There is no need for labeling some chemicals. Such chemicals are pesticides such as fungicides and rodenticide.
GHS has brought a lot of benefits in chemical categorization and classification. It is also complex with anomalies as well as exemptions widely. Experts are therefore required to prepare fully compliant GHS SDS labels. The experts also guard thee proprietary formulations when taking care of the exceptions.