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Table Of Contents  CertiGuide to A+ (A+ 4 Real)
 9  Chapter 12: Material Safety: a Personal and Technical Report on Hazardous Material Handling
      9  Reading and Understanding MSDSs

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Reading and Understanding MSDSs
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Section Two - Hazardous Constituents and Exposure Limits
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Title/Header and Section One - Product Information

Figure 409: MSDS Section One: Title and Product Information

 


The Title/Header and Product Information sections contain the basic information of whom, what and [sometimes] when.

Who: this should include the name and address of the manufacturers or Importer and a twenty-four emergency phone number. The emergency number is not always that of the manufacturer/importer, as this function is often contracted out to third parties.

What: The name of product as it is on the product label. Additional information includes any specific information that will identify the product such as the product ID (imagine that), stock number; re-order number, universal price code, container type and/or size, etc.

When: The date that the MSDS was written or revised. If this is not here, the next most likely place to find it is at end of the MSDS. Unfortunately, some MSDSs do not include the issue/revision date. This really is an important piece of information as out dated MSDSs often contain stale or incorrect information. Consider a product that contains Methylene Chloride, a few years back, the permissible exposure level was reduced down to 5% of its previous level. A MSDS that was issued/revised before that change would incorrectly state the permissible exposure limit. What is a permissible exposure limit? It will be explained farther on down the line.

In many MSDSs, there is not a section on the Product Information as that information is included in Title/Header. I have included a Product Information Section in the MSDS for Tcat’s Unreal Kleen, as there is growing trend to consolidate several products with the same or near same composition into one MSDS. In some of these consolidated MSDSs, the listing of applicable product names and IDs can take up a full page, and as such, are generally titled as separate section.

For example, suppose Tcat’s Unreal Kleen had a different product ID (or even product name) for each of different size containers. This would allow for the listing of all Products IDs (and names) that are applicable.

Taking this step even further, if Tcat’s Unreal Kleen was available in non-aerosol bulk liquid form, the only major difference would the absence of the two chemical constituents that provide the pressure in the aerosol containers. If the addition or absence of these two constituents does not significantly change the required information, then both the liquid-bulk and aerosol products can be presented on the same MSDS. Anywhere in the MSDS where this would make a significant difference, it would be noted and/or have dual values listed. As an example in the section that list the constituents, the propellants could be listed with brackets around them or with a different font and be noted ”aerosol products only“. Also, in the physical/chemical section if these two chemicals have a different boiling point, two different values could be listed, with one pertaining the aerosol and the other to liquid bulk product. On the surface, this may seem an awkward way of handling things, but I believe this approach can be a work saver.

Where I work, I maintain over 500 MSDSs that are spread out over six divisions and nine locations. The ability to reduce dozens of MSDSs down to one is a blessing indeed. Consider just one of the product categories e.g. an aerosol spray paint that is available in one hundred twenty three colors, each with a different product name and ID. I have just two MSDSs that cover all 123 colors.

From your perspective, just think how easier it will be for you find the correct MSDS for the particular color that you are using, if you do not have to wade through 123 of them. Especially, if the reason that you are looking for the MSDS is that you have just sprayed this stuff in your eyes and you need to know what are the first aid procedures!


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Reading and Understanding MSDSs
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Section Two - Hazardous Constituents and Exposure Limits
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