OSHA requires hazardous chemicals training

The U.S. Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is requiring employer training by December 1, 2013, regarding new methods for communicating to workers the presence of hazardous chemicals in the workplace.

The training is needed early in the marketplace transition process, since workers are already beginning to see the new labels and safety data sheets (SDSs, formerly known as material safety data sheets) on hazardous chemicals in their workplace, according to an OSHA press release.

Dentist must train their staff on the new label elements and new safety data sheet format by December 1. Employers or dental office managers must also update alternative workplace labeling and their hazard communication program as necessary and provide additional employee training for newly identified physical or health hazards by June 1, 2016.

The revised standards are meant to improve the quality and consistency of hazard information, making it safer for workers to do their jobs and easier for employers to stay competitive, OSHA said.

The revisions provide easily understandable information on appropriate handling and safe use of hazardous chemicals. The update also helps reduce trade barriers, helping businesses that regularly handle, store, and use hazardous chemicals while providing cost savings for businesses that update safety data sheets and labels for chemicals covered under the standards, the agency said.

The ADA regulatory compliance manual offers information on training requirements for the revised hazard communication standard to align with the United Nations' Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals.

The revised manual is available through ADA member services at 800-947-4746 or online at ADAcatalog.org, request S696B.

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