Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Publication of Final Hazard Communication Rule Delayed

The U.S. Department of Labor - Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has announced that its final Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) rule, originally scheduled for released in August 2011, has been delayed for a few weeks due to the extensive review of the final standard. The final standard is not expected to be published in September 2011. The final Hazard Communication rule is entering final Departmental review and will be sent to OMB once this review is complete

OSHA had proposed a three-year implementation period to phase in compliance with the revised hazard communication rule. During the rulemaking comment periods and at the public hearings, stakeholders submitted recommended implementation periods ranging from 3 to 15 years. OSHA has indicated that it has considered all of these comments and the implementation period will be announced when the final rule is published. However, a company may opt to classify the products now according to GHS as long as it also follows the current Hazard Communication Standard. OSHA did not propose any changes in the language requirements in the Hazard Communication Standard. However, GHS is designed to enable workers of limited literacy in the English language to understand the information.

OSHA’s preliminary estimate is that updating the Hazard Communication Standard will create a substantial annualized savings for employers of at least $585 million. The majority of these benefits will be realized through increases in productivity for health and safety managers as well as for logistics personnel.

Caltha LLP provides specialized expertise to clients nationwide in the evaluation environmental rules, developing EH&S compliance procedures, and preparing cost-effective EH&S management programs.

For further information contact Caltha LLP at

info@calthacompany.com or Caltha LLP Website

No comments: