OSHA standard 1910.1200, covering toxic and hazardous substances, was updated to align with the UN Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). 

The standard is aimed at ensuring that the hazards of all chemicals produced or imported are classified, and that information concerning the classified hazards is transmitted to employers and employees. The transmittal of information is to be accomplished by means of comprehensive hazard communication programs, which are to include container labeling and other forms of warning, safety data sheets and employee training.

The standard addresses classifying the potential hazards of chemicals, and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, and to preempt any legislative or regulatory enactments of a state, or political subdivision of a state, pertaining to this subject. Classifying the potential hazards of chemicals and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, may include, for example, but is not limited to, provisions for: developing and maintaining a written hazard communication program for the workplace, including lists of hazardous chemicals present; labeling of containers of chemicals in the workplace, as well as of containers of chemicals being shipped to other workplaces; preparation and distribution of safety data sheets to employees and downstream employers; and development and implementation of employee training programs regarding hazards of chemicals and protective measures. Under section 18 of the Act, no state or political subdivision of a state may adopt or enforce any requirement relating to the issue addressed by this Federal standard, except pursuant to a Federally-approved state plan.

Click here to see a sample Material Safety Data Sheet.

Click here to view OSHA’s occupational chemical database.

Click here to visit OSHA’s Hazard Communication page, which includes downloadable versions of the revised 1910.1200 Final Rule and appendices, updated to align with the GHS; a comparison of the Hazard Communication Standard, issued in 1994 (HazCom 1994), with the revised Hazard Communication Final Rule issued in 2012 (HazCom 2012); frequently asked questions on the revisions; and new guidance materials on the revisions.