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Company Name __________________________ Job Name __________________________ Date________

WHAT IS A HAZARDOUS MATERIAL OR CHEMICAL?

At one time or other, you and your co-workers have received training on the "Hazard Communication Standard" alerting you to the chemicals in use at your worksite. But everyone should review this information now and then, as a reminder of the need to be cautious.

Hazards from chemicals and other materials are everywhere we look-at work and at home. To protect yourself, you should know what type of exposure a particular chemical or material presents. Hazardous materials or chemicals can be classified into two groups, based upon their characteristics, physical hazards and health hazards. Examples of each follow:

Physical Hazards

Health Hazards

When the specific type of chemical or material hazard is identified, proper planning and precautions should be taken to prevent exposure and address emergencies. Precautions may include eliminating the hazard by not using it or by substituting a safer material. People can stay away from the hazard to prevent exposure or provide physical barriers as a safeguard. Emergency planning includes action plans for reporting, containing and disposing of chemical spills.

If you have questions about hazardous chemicals or materials: Review the specific chemical Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), which describes the physical and health hazards, or ask your supervisor. Only when you identify hazards can proper precautions be taken to minimize exposure.

Few of us are chemists, but we all need to learn about the chemicals we work with.

 

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