(Material) Safety Data Sheets and Other Chemical Safety information
The updated requirement for (M)SDS':
Beginning in 2013, OSHA will require that Material Safety Data Sheets comply with the Globally Harmonized System for Chemical Information and Labeling (also known as "GHS"). Many laboratory chemical vendors have already made this transition to this system, which improves the consistency and understandability of the information on the MSDS. Note also that under the GHS, the official term for MSDS becomes "Safety Data Sheet". If you would like more information on this topic, please contact us via the askEHS link above.
Safety Data Sheets are the primary source of chemical hazard information about specific chemicals, and are important elements of Cornell's Laboratory Safety Program
and Hazard Communication Program
to comply with the OSHA Laboratory Standard and the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard.
Supervisors, including Principal Investigators and Laboratory Managers, are responsible for ensuring their employees have access to Safety Data Sheets for all hazardous chemicals used in the workplace or laboratory. Material Safety Data Sheet. This information must be accessible for employees during all shifts, including laboratory personnel. Access to MSDS' can mean access to be achieved through paper copies or via Internet access through the sources below. To meet this regulatory requirement, we recommend that an employee be able to obtain a SDS within 5 minutes. In case of accident involving a chemical, having a SDS for the emergency personnel and the attending physician will help assure proper treatment can be administered as quickly as possible.
Internet (Material) Safety Data Sheet Sites:
Our recommended process for obtaining an SDS is:
- Use Internet access to find an SDS for a chemical or product from the manufacturer or from the sites below.
- If you still can't locate an SDS or need help interpreting the information on one for your situation, you may request our help by using the askEHS web page at the link above.
Web sites of major scientific chemical vendors at Cornell:
VWR Scientific Products
Other sources of (M)SDS':
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety MSDS collection plus CHEMINFO Search http://resolver.library.cornell.edu/misc/5450580
Where to find MSDS' on the Internet from Interactive Learning Paradigms Incorporated contains links to a variety of SDS sites, and also includes a glossary of terms used on SDS's.
Databases that search across several good sources, all include chemical name searching:
) from the National Library of Medicine, a cluster of databases on toxicology, hazardous chemicals, and related areas. There is also a free mobile app for accessing this database.
* CAMEO Chemicals
(Free to public, http://cameochemicals.noaa.gov/
) includes the ability to assess reactivity between mixtures of various chemicals as well as chemical groups.
Handbooks of chemical safety information which also include chemical name searching:
* Sax's Dangerous Properties of Industrial Materials
* Bretherick's Handbook of Reactive Chemical Hazards
* Wiley guide to chemical incompatibilities
* HazMat Data: For First Response, Transportation, Storage, and Security
Journals and Blogs of Interest
Journal of Chemical Health and Safety
C&EN Safety Zone
Safety Letters to Chemical & Engineering News