Plastics Testifies On Osha Hazard Communication Standard
The Plastics Industry Association (Plastics) is the only organization that supports the entire plastics supply chain, representing nearly one million workers in the $395 billion U.S. industry. Since 1937, PLASTICS has been working to make its members and the industry more globally competitive while advancing recycling and sustainability.
Plastics members are committed to worker and product safety and support increased global harmonization, but cannot fully support OSHA’s proposed updates to its Hazard Communication Standard (HCS). We urge OSHA to consider modifications to better serve its objectives, reduce uncertainty, avoid unintended consequences, and provide adequate time for compliance. We welcome the opportunity to work with OSHA to achieve this.
Proposed changes to the scope of hazard classification would require chemical manufacturers to classify chemicals based on the hazards of downstream chemical reactions and reaction products. This is beyond a clarification, shifts responsibility and departs from the current regulatory scheme. If adopted, required changes to safety data sheets (SDSs) could create confusion and overwhelm users of many chemicals with excess warnings irrelevant to their use of that chemical.
While more harmonized, the proposed definition of “combustible dust” is unclear and inconsistent with a preferable National Fire Protection Association definition on which OSHA has relied. OSHA took some steps in the right direction to improve container labeling. Further revisions would improve requirements for small containers, in-plant systems, materials “released for shipment” and labels designed to meet the requirements of multiple jurisdictions. Further protection of confidential ingredients and consideration of batch variability is needed. The proposed rule significantly underestimates the costs and time needed for compliance.
For more details: www.plasticsindustry