Some Background Information about GHS Safety Data Sheets
GHS has a necessary feature that are intended to provide information that are comprehensive about a substance or mixture that will be used in workplace chemical management, and these are called safety data sheets. GHS is the system used all over the world in harmonizing the elements of hazard classification criteria and chemical hazard communication, and it is an acronym for Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals.
GHS SDS are a must to be prepared in situation when there is a chemical or formulation seen to be hazardous according to the different categories. There must be a preparation of GHS safety data sheets, to be done by the manufacturer, dealer, importer or exporter, when there is a match of the cut off value of chemical with the various hazard classifications.
In order to achieve many objectives, the United Nations have recommended the GHS to nations across the globe for adaptation.
The health of employees who are involved in the chain of processing, storage, handling and transportation of chemicals are protected through the GHS, and this is one important objective of the system. Another goal of the GHS is to safeguard our environment. This is through a unified system of classification that properly identifies chemicals and their levels of hazards, thereby facilitating trade across countries and borders.
It is a fact that some countries did not have a system of classification in place and other countries do have various kinds of classification, and so to create uniformity and address these differences, the aim of the GHS safety data sheets is to serve this purpose.
The basis of classification process would consider the intrinsic hazardous element of a single chemical and its formulation, and how it would impact with air, water and other chemicals once there is a reaction and when released to the environment.
GHS had underwent several revisions and either a country will accept it or present its own norms. Employees are to undergo training in the use and interpretation of the SDS, and how to follow the right process where chemical handling is concern, and this a key component of the system.
Another feature of the system is on the implementation of the recommendations set. For example, if an importer distributor are just to receive containers of chemicals that are sealed with GHS labels, it is their duty to make sure that the labels remain intact on the containers.
The present data are the basis of GHS, and if a new data would develop, that could change the system of classification, manufacturers and distributors must be kept abreast of these new development.
Experts are then needed in preparation of the GHS SDS in order to maintain the purpose of GHS to bring about uniformity in the categorization and classification of chemicals.