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|Title: 01/27/1993 - Definition of an "article" under the hazard communication standard.
|Record Type: Interpretation
|Standard Number: 1910.1200(b)(6)(iv)
January 27, 1993
Mr. Joe Jackson
Amarillo Gear Company
Post Office Box 1789
Amarillo, Texas 79105
Dear Mr. Jackson:
This is in response to your inquiry of October 5, 1992, concerning the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) Hazard Communication Standard, 29 CFR 1910.1200.
You requested OSHA's opinion on whether Amarillo Gear Company's right angle gear boxes are exempt from the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS). While we cannot give individual products exemption or approval status, we will explain how "articles" are considered exempt from the HCS.
OSHA promulgated the HCS, also known as the "Right to Know" rule, to ensure that the hazards of all chemicals produced or imported into the U.S. are evaluated, and that information concerning their hazards is transmitted to employers and employees. The standard applies to all chemicals which are known to be present in the workplace in such a manner that employees may be exposed to them under normal conditions of use or in a foreseeable emergency. For this reason it is important for manufacturers to assess whether or not their products present a hazard in the work place.
The current definition of "article" in 29 CFR 1910.1200 is provided as follows (this definition may change slightly, as per the proposed rule which was published in the Federal Register on August 8, 1988; however if a change is made it would merely clarify the definition as it stands now):
Mark the locations of your safety equipment and training materials with signs from Safety Emporium.
Employees who are expected to perform work on the machinery (i.e. lubricating or cleaning) that would expose them to hazardous chemicals, must be made aware of the hazards of the chemicals they will be expected to use. Their employer must obtain MSDSs for the lubricant or cleaning agent, if those items could result in exposure to hazardous chemicals, and train employees on the hazards of those chemicals.
We hope this information is helpful. If you have any further questions please contact the Office of Health Compliance Assistance at (202) 219-8036.
Roger A. Clark,
Directorate of Compliance Programs
October 5, 1992
U.S. Department of Labor
3rd & Constitution Ave. N.W.
Washington, DC 20210
We have talked to the OSHA office in Lubbock and they agree with us that the product we manufacture is considered an "article" by OSHA and would not require an MSDS sheet. They suggested that we get a letter from the OSHA office in Washington stating that our product is exempt.
If you could send us a letter with the information above included, it will make explaining to our customers a lot easier.
Joe D. Jackson
The official, public domain, OSHA version of this document is available at http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=INTERPRETATIONS&p_id=21008&p_text_version=FALSE