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Material safety data sheets (MSDS)

Producers & distributors of dangerous substances in EC member states MUST provide industrial and professional users with detailed health, safety and environmental information and advice about their products in the form of safety data sheets. Directive 91/155/EEC as amended by Directives 93/112/EEC and 2001/58/EC, sets out the requirements for the information which should be included in a safety data sheet.

Revisions to a safety data sheet MUST be provided to (some) former recipients of the substance.

The purpose of a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) is to inform industrial purchasers and users of hazardous chemicals of the reasonably foreseeable physical and chemical hazards for health and environment that may arise from the use of those chemicals. MSDS's include information such as physical data, toxicity, health effects, first aid, reactivity, storage, disposal, protective equipment, and spill/leak procedures.

Legal basis for MSDS is in Directive 67/548/EEC.

Directive 91/155/EEC, as amended by Directives 93/112/EEC and 2001/58/EC, http://www.dehp-facts.com/upload/documents/document34.pdf sets out the requirements for the information which should be included in a safety data sheet.

Universities and educational centres should include in the curricula of chemistry and chemical engineering courses in the field of process safety and risk analysis. The use of MSDS must be fundamental to introduce at the students basic concept of chemical hazard due to the use and manipulation of chemicals.

Legal requirements for MSDS content and distribution may vary outside the EC.


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