Tuesday, January 24, 2012

HCS Update to align with GHS

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has Extended Review of the Final Rule regarding the major revision of the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to align with the Globally Harmonized System. This Final Rule was received on October 25, 2011 for the 90-Review by the OMB. As of January 24, 2012 (the 90-day deadline), the OMB has extended the review until further notice.

You may visit us online to place a preorder for any 2012 HCS OSHA compliance products.

DOL/OSHA RIN: 1218-AC20 Publication ID: Spring 2011
Title: Hazard Communication
Abstract: OSHA's Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) requires chemical manufacturers and importers to evaluate the hazards of the chemicals they produce or import, and prepare labels and material safety data sheets to convey the hazards and associated protective measures to users of the chemicals. All employers with hazardous chemicals in their workplaces are required to have a hazard communication program, including labels on containers, material safety data sheets (MSDS), and training for employees. Within the United States (U.S.), there are other Federal agencies that also have requirements for classification and labeling of chemicals at different stages of the life cycle. Internationally, there are a number of countries that have developed similar laws that require information about chemicals to be prepared and transmitted to affected parties. These laws vary with regard to the scope of substances covered, definitions of hazards, the specificity of requirements (e.g., specification of a format for MSDSs), and the use of symbols and pictograms. The inconsistencies between the various laws are substantial enough that different labels and safety data sheets must often be used for the same product when it is marketed in different nations. The diverse and sometimes conflicting national and international requirements can create confusion among those who seek to use hazard information. Labels and safety data sheets may include symbols and hazard statements that are unfamiliar to readers or not well understood. Containers may be labeled with such a large volume of information that important statements are not easily recognized. Development of multiple sets of labels and safety data sheets is a major compliance burden for chemical manufacturers, distributors, and transporters involved in international trade. Small businesses may have particular difficulty in coping with the complexities and costs involved. As a result of this situation, and in recognition of the extensive international trade in chemicals, there has been a long-standing effort to harmonize these requirements and develop a system that can be used around the world. In 2003, the United Nations adopted the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). Countries are now adopting the GHS into their national regulatory systems. OSHA published the NPRM on September 30, 2009 and held public hearings in Washington, DC and Pittsburgh, PA in March 2010. The record closed on June 1, 2010. OSHA is scheduled to publish the final rule in August 2011.
Agency: Department of Labor(DOL) Priority: Economically Significant
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage
Major: Yes Unfunded Mandates: Private Sector
CFR Citation: 29 CFR 1910.1200; 29 CFR 1915.1200; 29 CFR 1917.28; 29 CFR 1918.90; 29 CFR 1926.59; 29 CFR 1928.21
Legal Authority: 29 USC 655(b); 29 USC 657
Legal Deadline: None
Anticipated Costs and Benefits:
The estimates of the costs and benefits are still under development.
OSHA's risk analysis is under development.

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