Update Your HazCom Program for Combustible Dusts

According to the “Status Report on Combustible Dust National Emphasis Program,” published by OSHA in October 2009, the Hazard Communication (HazCom) standard is the most frequently-cited standard with respect to combustible dust-related hazards. This paper can help you determine what type of information you need to develop and include on your Safety Data Sheets (SDSs).

Note that the recent update to the HazCom standard refers to material safety data sheets (MSDSs) as safety data sheets (SDSs). A link to this update is included at the end of this paper.

OSHA’s Hazardous Communication Standard, 29 CFR 1910.1200, requires manufacturers and importers of chemicals to conduct a hazard evaluation of chemicals they produce or import. The results of this evaluation are to be included on a SDS and any container labels. Employers must then maintain these SDSs in the workplace and develop a written program to communicate to workers this hazardous chemical information. Although always intended to be included in HazCom programs, the most recent update to this standard, on March 26, 2012, added “combustible dust” to the definition for a hazardous chemical.

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