Friday, November 18, 2011

Laboratory Reagents: Safety first

I know that once you are in a Lab, the first thing that comes to your mind is start mixing things and watch chemical reactions; I've been there but trust me, its important to know what type of chemicals you are dealing with in case something goes wrong.
Every laboratory must keep the MSDS (Material Safety Data sheet) of every single one of the reagents they use. This sheet has all the important data regarding the properties of a particular substance.
Now i will talk about what kind of information can be found on the MSDS; depending on the regulations and laws of every country, each MSDS has specific requirements, the next part is a General description of the MSDS form.

A Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) MUST be used by any chemical manufacturers, resellers and every one that will have a direct contact with the substance, this to be aware of the physical and health hazards that these chemicals might present such as flammability, flashpoint, carcinogenicity, poison hazard, etc.
Like i said depending on the regulation the MSDS might present different sections.

The United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) requires the following sections on every MSDS:

  • Manufacturer's Name and Contact Information
  • Hazardous Ingredients/Identity Information
  • Physical/Chemical Characteristics
  • Fire and Explosion Hazard Data
  • Reactivity Data 
  • Health Hazard Data
  • Precautions for Safe Handling and Use
  • Control Measures
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has a slightly different format.

  • Chemical Product & Company Information
  • Composition/Information on Ingredients
  • Hazards Identification
  • First Aid Measures
  • Fire Fighting Measures
  • Accidental Release Measures
  • Handling and Storage
  • Exposure Controls/Personal Protection
  • Physical and Chemical Properties
  • Stability and Reactivity
  • Toxicological Information
  • Ecological Information
  • Disposal Considerations
  • Transport Information
  • Regulatory Information
  • Other Information

Stay tuned, ill explain more about each section of the MSDS.


Sub-Radar-Mike said...

Better safe than sorry when it comes to chemicals.

Xenofonte said...

Safety is very important, an also an open eye on what we are doing.

HTCAndroidChef said...

even as a restaurant owner I have to train employees on chemical hazards... going through your aticles is VERY helpful. woogie

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