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Thursday, May 31, 2012

What are the NAFTA MSDS Authoring Standards?

NAFTA �North American Free Trade Agreement� MSDS is a document which is compliant across the whole North American continent under the following standards:

The Canadian standard WHMIS �Workplace Hazardous Material Information System� is implemented through coordinated federal, provincial and territorial legislation. Supplier labeling and MSDS requirements are set out under the federal �Hazardous products Act� and associated �Controlled Products Regulations�. All of the provincial territorial and federal agencies responsible for occupational safety and health have established WHMIS employer requirements within there respective jurisdictions. These requirements obligate employers to ensure that controlled products used, stored, handled or disposed of in the workplace are properly labeled, that MSDSs are made available to workers, and that workers receive education and training to ensure the safe storage, handling, use and disposal of controlled products in the wor kplace.

The United States standard �29 CFR 1910.1200 - Occupational Safety & Health Administration� as well as the Mexican standard �NOM-018-STPS-2000� are also concerned with protecting the safety, health and welfare of people engaged in work or employment. The goal of all these standards is to foster a safe work environment. As a secondary effect, it may also protect co-workers, family members, employers, customers, suppliers, nearby communities, and other members of the public who are impacted by the workplace environment.

The North American ANSI standard �ANSI.Z400.1-2004� applies to the preparation of MSDSs for chemicals and materials used under occupational conditions. It presents basic information on how to develop and write MSDSs that are complete, clear and consistent. It also identifies information that must be included to comply with the HCS. Additional information is provided to help comply with state and federal environmental and safety laws and regulations. With the addition of certain data elements, this Standard is also acceptable for international use.

What all of the above standards have in common is to author a fully NAFTA MSDS complaint document which can be used through out the whole North American continent. It meets the required regulations for three countries Canada, United States and Mexico which have joined the free trade agreement in order to create a free way of chemical trading.

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