The safety data sheet, also known as an SDS, is an essential component of the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard and of a worker’s right to know about the chemical hazards at his or her workplace.
In this article, we’ll explain what an SDS is, how it’s related to an MSDS and to the GHS-alignment of Haz-Com, what you’ll find in its sixteen different sections, and even give you some additional information about SDSs, including issues related to employer responsibilities and employee access.
Every year, OSHA releases data about the OSHA standards that they most frequently issue citations for in the previous fiscal year. They did it in 2016. They did it in 2015. They did it…well, you get the idea.
Typically, the different standards that appear on the list are the same ones, year after year, although sometimes one leap-frogs ahead of some others to rank more highly than it did in past years.
We’ve got the list for you below, but before you jump down and see the answers, let’s try to make this a little fun. What standard do you expect to be on the top of the list, with the most citations? Do you expect any standard to make a big jump up or down? Do you think any standard that’s typically on the list won’t be this year, or that there will be a new standard this year that usually isn’t there?
Give those questions a little though, and then move on to see the list below.
When OSHA releases their extended data on these standard citations, which typically happens in December or January, we’ll get you that information as well.
One last thing–feel free to download our guide to MSHA Online Compliance below before you close this article.
Online MSHA Compliance Guide
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Each of these areas are intended to prevent catastrophic, and potentially lethal, arc flash and electrical injuries in the workplace. Due to the severity of arc flash incidents, stringent methods are needed to protect workers.
To that end, proper selection of PPE is critical. Arc flash is an unforgiving event if it transpires. Even PPE may not fully protect workers in the event of a serious electrical event, but the wrong selection can be deadly.
Live work on electrical equipment carries a substantial risk of electric shock and arc flash. When exposed to energized equipment, employees must have a clear understanding of potential hazards and ways to work safely. Prevention of unsafe conditions is vital, as the consequences of electrical shock and arc flash can be devastating.
Temperatures during an arc flash can reach or exceed 35,000 °F (19,400 °C). Explosions during these events can occur as metal changes from a solid to a gaseous state, causing expansion and dynamic force. The resulting blast can produce blinding light, flying shrapnel, molten metal, extreme pressure, electric shock, and deafening noise.
Employees experiencing such catastrophes can be severely burned and/or suffer vision and hearing loss, crushing body injuries, and concussions and other traumatic brain injuries. Flying shrapnel from these events can incur serious wounds or impalements. If the work is elevated, the force of the arc blast or shock also may cause workers to fall from heights and produce additional injuries.
Protecting your workers from hazards such as these mandates several interwoven and necessary training components.
If you’re wondering about what is required, let’s take a look at the applicable standards in this article.
You’ve heard about arc flash, but do you really understand enough to protect your workers?
Arc flash is a topic that is undergoing increased discussion in the workplace safety and health industry. And with good reason, as according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fatalities due to arc flash occur at a rate of approximately one per day in the USA. And annually, more than two thousand workers are admitted to intensive care burn units because of these catastrophes.
An arc flash represents an extremely dangerous condition in the workplace. If you don’t have an adequate safety program in place, your workers may be exposed to these dangers. Let’s review some of the basics and look at what occurs during an arc flash incident, as well how to prevent hazardous conditions.
The article is a continuation of our series highlighting some “big issues” in safety training, and it focuses on evaluating safety training to make sure you’re getting the desired results. Our Effective Safety Training article all the big points in the series plus more, our article on evaluating safety training covers much of what is discussed in the magazine article as well (though not everything), and our free Guide to Effective Safety Training at the bottom of this article covers much of the same ground.
The next article in the series at Professional Safety will focus on continuous improvement of safety training, so hang tight for that one.
And speaking of Professional Safety, the September article looks like a good one. Here’s a sneak peek of topics covered:
Protecting workers in extreme temperatures
MSDSs & ergonomics
Electric arc and the thermal effect
Health issues in the power generation industry
Work-site physical therapy
“Four fields” of safety performance
Let us know if you’ve got any questions. Otherwise, get yourself a comfy seat in the shade, pour yourself some nice iced tea, and enjoy your magazine reading!
Effective EHS Training: A Step-by-Step Guide
Learn how to design, create, deliver, and evaluate effective EHS training by following these best practices with our free step-by-step guide.