chemical footprint

Saskatchewan upgrades chemical labelling

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Saskatchewan’s chemical labelling system will soon align with a new world-wide standard. Over the last few years, there has been a global move to harmonize the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS).

The change will promote safety by ensuring consistency across jurisdictions and around the world. It will also remove a barrier to interprovincial and international trade.

“Workers will have consistent and appropriate information about the chemicals they are handling,” said Labour Relations and Workplace Safety Minister Don Morgan “We want everyone to return home safely each night.”

Changes to Saskatchewan’s WHMIS regulations include:

  • A new name for controlled products. They will now be called hazardous products.
  • New rules related to the classification of workplace chemicals.
  • New labelling requirements using pictograms instead of symbols.
  • A new format for Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) now referred to as Safety Data Sheets (SDS).

The key responsibilities of suppliers, employers and workers remain the same. The regulatory changes take effect on August 17, 2016. Workplaces will have until December 1, 2018 to come into full compliance.

During the transition period workplaces need to be fully compliant with the current WHMIS or with the new WHMIS 2015, not both.  Employers will be required to train their employees on the changes.

Online training is available at www.worksafesask.ca/prevention/whmis2015.

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