OSHA revises Hazard Communication Standard to protect workers from chemical exposure

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has revised its Hazard Communication Standard in order to better protect workers from hazardous chemicals, aligning the standards with the United Nations' global chemical labeling system.

Once the new standard is implemented, it is expected to prevent an estimated 43 deaths and result in up to $475.2 million in increased U.S. business productivity every year.

"Exposure to hazardous chemicals is one of the most serious dangers facing American workers today," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Revising OSHA's Hazard Communication Standard will improve the quality, consistency, and clarity of hazard information that workers receive, making it safer for workers to do their jobs and easier for employers to stay competitive in the global marketplace."

The standard will be fully implemented in 2016, and will benefit workers by clarifying what chemical hazards exist in the workplace, promoting safety training, and improving understanding of hazards.

According to OSHA, hazardous chemicals in the workplace can include dusts, mixtures, and common items such as paints, fuels, and solvents. Protect workers from these hazards with appropriate safety products, including chemical and hazardous material signs, respiratory protection, and protective clothing.

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