Don’t know if the material has one or more of these characteristics? Remember: they are all handled differently (see important message to handlers below).
1. We check the materials safety data sheet (SDS).
Every hazardous chemical must have a safety data sheet...that’s the law! The SDS’s are provided by the chemical manufacturer or distributor.
2. If we have no idea what the name of the chemical is or the identity of its constituents, then we need to have a sample of the material analyzed by an analytical laboratory.
3. And finally, once we know exactly what the hazardous material is, we follow the handling instructions stated in the material(s) SDS. Many SDS’s are available without cost at this website: http://www.msdshazcom.com/
Important: Handlers of hazardous materials must be familiar with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Code of Federal Regulation (CFR) Title 29 CFR 1910.1200, the Hazard Communications Standard. The document defines chemical health and physical hazards, SDSs, labeling, relevant training requirements, and exceptions (certain materials not covered by the standard).
For informative training on this topic and related topics please visit our hazmat and hazwoper video sections on this website.