Last updated August 18, 2005
A. General. Material safety data sheets (MSDSs) are an essential source of information regarding the chemical composition and hazards presented by a material. MSDS information includes: physical data (melting point, boiling point, flash point etc.), toxicity and health effects, first aid recommendations, reactivity data, storage and disposal information, recommended protective equipment, and spill or leak response procedures. An MSDS also provides valuable information for medical personnel in the event of an injury or exposure involving a hazardous material.
B. Process. Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that MSDSs are available and accessible to personnel (including employees and students), and that all personnel are aware of their MSDSs location. MSDSs may be kept by each laboratory or office, or in a central location for an entire department. Regardless of location, MSDSs must be available and accessible at all times to any person who may handle, use, spill, or be exposed to the material. The collection of MSDSs must be organized so a specific MSDS may be found promptly. Users are required to be aware of the hazards associated with a material prior to using the material.
C. Procedures. Obtaining an MSDS:
C-1. The Internet. Use of the Internet is a convenient method for obtaining MSDSs. Many manufacturers have websites that allow convenient and prompt requesting or retrieval of an MSDS. The Environmental Health and Safety office website has a list of links to some useful MSDS websites. Please be aware that the information contained in an MSDS is accurate for that particular chemical for that particular manufacturer only.
C-2. Environmental Health and Safety Office. If you are unable to obtain an MSDS via the Internet, please submit a request (in writing, or by email) to the Environmental Health and Safety office. You may also complete the MSDS request form at the EHS-MSDS links website. The following information is required to process a request for an MSDS: your name, your phone number, your campus zip code, the material name, the material catalog code or product code, and the name, address and phone number of the material’s manufacturer. A request will require time to process, so please anticipate accordingly.
Safety Office Email
D. Information. For further information, please call the Environmental Health and Safety office, 208- 885-6524.