American Coatings Association’s hazard rating system

The Hazardous Material Identification System (HMIS®) – the American Coatings Association’s hazard rating system – is designed to be compatible with workplace labeling requirements of the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) revised Hazard Communication Standard. The HMIS® is constructed to communicate in-plant hazard information to employees through training and the use of colors, numbers, alphabetic characters, and symbols representing types of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Every employer is responsible for providing its employees with a safe and healthy workplace. Hazard communication is an important part of this responsibility. Employers must be trained to recognize the potential hazards of diverse chemicals and properly address these hazards through work practice procedures and the use of PPE. Additionally, hazard communication is required by federal law.

The OSHA standard titled “Hazard Communication” found in Title 29 (Labor) of the Code of Federal Regulations part 1910, section 1200, requires chemical manufacturers, importers, distributors, and employers to provide hazard information to employees and customers. This standard was revised and published on March 26, 2012 to align with the United Nations’ Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals and provides specific requirements for labeling, SDS elements, and training.

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