Detroit Janitorial & Cleaning Services Blog

Are Your Facility Services Putting You at Risk with MSDS Sheets?

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Mon, May 07, 2012 @ 06:56 AM

imagesDo you work with chemicals or other hazardous substances? Did you know that by law you must have a MSDS Sheet for every chemical product in your building?  It doesn’t matter if your cleaning company is providing the chemicals for use in your building or not. At the end of the day, it is the responsibility of the occupants to provide MSDS information, in case someone became sick or injured as a result of coming in contact with a chemical in your facility. A material safety data sheet (MSDS) is a form containing data regarding the properties of a particular substance.  The law for “Employees Right to Know” is protected by OSHA, where employees working with hazardous chemicals must know how to use and store that product easily and safely. If any employer does not provide employees with MSDS's, they are  violating the law and must be reported. MSDS's provide good information on composition, toxicology, hazard identification, first aid measures, handling procedures, and personal protection. 

MSDS's act as a good source to know what a certain chemical is made of with its properties, hazards, usage, and storage.  Today there are thousands of MSDS's available for you over the internet,where you can learn how to use and understand them. Today they are used as a system to catalog information on chemicals. These can be found at any workplace where chemicals and other hazard substances are used. It is the duty of employer to spread awareness about MSDS’s and to see if people are actually following the instructions which are included. One of the precautions that people take when they are working with chemicals, is they should always label chemicals. These labels may include instructions, name, storage, disposability, and symbols to categorize a chemical on how hazardous and lethal it is.

Example:

When a generator which runs on fuel such as petrol or diesel, is turned on it releases carbon monoxide in the exhaust. Characteristics of carbon monoxide are colorless and have no smell or taste. The release of this toxic in a closed area can have a devastating impact of a person’s health when exposed. It can cause unconsciousness and even death. It’s the duty of the employer to calculate the risk and hazard involved when using fuel-based generators before putting it in use. Awareness must be spread amongst employees to use precautions at all times and label indicating phrases such as:

  • may cause harm to the unborn child.
  • toxic by inhalation.

A person must have knowledge while working with a certain chemical. Whether a person is an beginner or professional still doesn’t give you an excuse to use chemicals without checking with MSDS's  properties. You should always check MSDS's to ensure that you know how to handle, store, and dispose a chemical so that you don’t put yourself and other lives in danger. Some of the most serious incidents in any industry are result of not having enough knowledge of handling a chemical. Don’t become an number-spread knowledge and use this standard to make a safe and healthy work environment.  

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Tags: Commercial Cleaning, Building Maintenance, Customer Focus

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