Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
must have the following information on them:
§ Hazardous Ingredients
§ Physical Data (m.p., b.p., color, odor, etc.)
§ Fire and Explosion Data (flash pt., autoignition temp, etc.)
§ Reactivity Data (including incompatibilities)
§ Toxicological Properties (including toxic doses, exposure limits)
§ Preventative Measures
§ First Aid Measures
§ Preparation Information: who is responsible for the MSDS
Other Requirements for an MSDS:
§ No blanks - mark with N/A if information not available
§ Required data in each category. (Provided by supplier)
§ Other information of awareness - Update info when available
§ Consistency - label and MSDS should say the same thing
If suppliers MSDS are not readily available, then employers may generate their own MSDS for
the substance. However, to keep everyone honest, the original supplier MSDS must be made
available for comparison.
The operative phrase for MSDS is that they must be READILY AVAILABLE to the employee for
consultation BEFORE using the controlled product. It does no good to have the MSDS locked in
a filing cabinet in the supervisor's office when some grad student wants to work at
some Sunday morning.
§ MSDS library kept in some central location - accessible
Note that MSDS must be updated at least every three years. Watch out for supplier MSDS
That are already outdated!
*You can also obtain the MSDS from different suppliers homepages as in the highlighted links
on the WHMIS training main menu.