From: Kim Gates <kim.gates**At_Symbol_Here**STONYBROOK.EDU>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Original source of safety data?
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2015 07:35:26 -0500
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Message-ID: CAA4EBLu=xax64+aetWxO_XMX6JSVW3vBiX0rcoUSU5udf05cDw**At_Symbol_Here**
In-Reply-To <14bc86dcab7-43c5-7018**At_Symbol_Here**>

Here's the OSHA letter for the stay:

The purpose of this memorandum is to provide enforcement guidance on the June 1, 2015 effective date - the date by which chemical manufacturers, importers, distributors and employers must be in compliance with all modified provisions of the HCS, other than the two exceptions for distributors and employers at 29 CFR 1910.1200(j)(2)(i) and (ii). This enforcement guidance applies only to HCS 2012 compliance inspections of chemical manufacturers, importers, and distributors in their classification of hazardous chemicals and development of safety data sheets (SDSs) and labels for chemical mixtures.


This memorandum describes the Agency's enforcement position on the HCS June 1, 2015 effective date for manufacturers and importers, including product formulators, that have exercised reasonable diligence and good faith to classify their chemical mixtures according to HCS 2012 and consequently develop HCS 2012-compliant SDSs and labels. However, due to circumstances beyond their control, they have not received classifications and SDS information from upstream suppliers of raw materials. In addition, this enforcement guidance addresses when manufacturers and importers must develop HCS 2012-compliant SDSs and labels after receiving upstream supplier SDSs, as well as how this guidance affects distributors..........................

In order to determine if a manufacturer or importer has established "reasonable diligence" and "good faith efforts," the CSHO must review its overall efforts, attention, and action(s) taken to comply with HCS 2012. Upon request from a CSHO, a manufacturer or importer must provide documentation of its substantive efforts to:

Establishing reasonable diligence and good faith effort requires that the manufacturer or importer demonstrate attempt(s) to obtain the necessary SDSs through both oral and written communication directly with the upstream supplier. For each mixture shipped by a manufacturer or importer after June 1, 2015 that does not comply with HCS 2012, the CSHO shall consider whether the manufacturer or importer:

(a) Developed and documented the process used to gather the necessary classification information from its upstream suppliers and the status of such efforts;

(b) Developed and documented efforts to find hazard information from alternative sources (e.g., chemical registries);

(c) Provided a written account of continued dialogue with its upstream suppliers, including dated copies of all relevant written communication with its upstream suppliers;

(d) Provided a written account of continued dialogue with its distributors, including dated copies of all relevant written communication with its distributors informing them why it has been unable to comply with HCS 2012; and,

(e) Developed the course of action it will follow to make the necessary changes to SDSs and labels.

Although the CSHO must consider all of the above factors, any combination of these efforts may, depending on the circumstance, be consistent with reasonable diligence and good faith efforts. The CSHO shall always consider whether the manufacturer or importer attempted to obtain the hazard information in a timely manner (i.e., in a manner that would have enabled it to comply with the June 1, 2015 effective date) in determining whether a manufacturer or importer exercised reasonable diligence and made good faith efforts to comply. Reasonable diligence and good faith also requires that the manufacturer or importer provide a clear timeline for when it expects to comply with HCS 2012........

Kim Gates
Laboratory Safety Specialist
Environmental Health & Safety
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794-6200
FAX: 631-632-9683
EH&S Web site:

On Thu, Feb 26, 2015 at 7:26 PM, Monona Rossol <actsnyc**At_Symbol_Here**> wrote:
It's a mess, Ralph. I'm going to answer in a round-about way.
In December a petition on behalf of the trade associations for the major chemical industries asked for and received from OSHA an exemption from the June 1, 2015 deadline for SDSs. This includes the National Association of Chemical Distributors, the National Association of Manufacturers and the Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Affiliates.
Their rationale was amazing. They said they couldn't comply because their primary sources were not providing the data needed on the SDS.. And that this "Often this involves a supply chain that is three to five layers deep."
And all along I thought they were withholding information. Hell, they are claiming they don't KNOW.
The other flaw in their logic is that they are assuming that the primary manufacturers have and test data or information to pass down to them. Usually the physical and toxicological data on a chemical has to be obtained from various sources and studies done over the years. Simply knowing the identity of the chemical should be enough to do a literature search. But clearly, they are claiming they can only get the data from their suppliers. And just as clearly, when they get that data they will copy it on to their SDSs.
So that's my answer. But as an aside: the petitioners also included the adhesives and sealant makers, cleaning and disinfecting product manufacturers, composite makers, agricultural product makers, and even the Greenies got into the act through the Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment.
I also have a question for all of these industries. It is this: Do you really think the other 162 countries that have adopted the SDS and are requiring it by June 1, 2015 are going to also give them a pass? I hope they don't. So those manufacturers who export would be wise to find a way to cobble together an SDS.
Sadly, you and I, who live and purchase chemicals in THIS country, we won't be getting a lot of good SDSs. The reason is that OSHA extended this relief from the deadline to ANY manufacturer who can show they have made a good faith effort to obtain the information from their suppliers. And from what I learned to day from an OSHA Labor Liaison and an OSHA Senior IH, they will only be enforcing the requirement to show this good faith effort if you and I file a written complaint about the bad MSDS or SDS data. Like that's going to happen.
So expect that MSDSs will be around in the US for quite a while.
Monona Rossol, M.S., M.F.A., Industrial Hygienist
President: Arts, Crafts & Theater Safety, Inc.
Safety Officer: Local USA829, IATSE
181 Thompson St., #23
New York, NY 10012 212-777-0062

-----Original Message-----
From: Stuart, Ralph <Ralph.Stuart**At_Symbol_Here**KEENE.EDU>
Sent: Thu, Feb 26, 2015 4:20 pm
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Original source of safety data?

During our ongoing project with CINF in identifying sources of electronic
chemical safety information, a set of questions that has arisen: 
- What is the
original source of most chemical safety information (e.g. flashpoints, health
hazard data, reactivities, etc.)? - How much information, for example on a SDS,
is simply copied over from another source and how much data is actually
generated and/or verified by the author/publisher of the source? 
- What is the
original source of this data? 
- How are potential conflicts in this data
between these information sources resolved?

I'm sure there are people on
DCHAS-L who have experience in answering these questions for professional safety
purposes; any comments on any or all of these questions would be

- Ralph

Ralph Stuart, CIH, CCHO
Chemical Hygiene
Keene State College


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