There are two (2) main types of labels: supplier labels and workplace labels. Labels provide key information to alert you about critical hazards, precautions and first-aid measures.
When reading a supplier label, look for consistency between the information elements. Does the hazard pictogram(s) match the risk phrases, and the information on the SDS? Are the precautions and first-aid measures consistent with the hazards? The pictogram(s), signal word and hazard statement(s) must be grouped together on a label.
Information Elements on a Supplier Label:
- Product Identifier
- Hazard Pictogram
- Signal Word
- Hazard Statements
- Precautionary Statements
- Supplier Identifier
SDSs or supplier labels will show a signal word that indicates the severity of the hazard, if assigned to a hazard class and category. Some low hazard categories do not have a signal word assigned.
There are two signal words: Danger and Warning.
- Danger is used for the more severe hazards.
- Warning is used for less severe hazards.
Workplace labels are a simplified version of a supplier label and may be used when hazardous materials are made in the workplace, or when hazardous materials are poured from the original container into another container. The employer is responsible for affixing workplace labels to these containers. This label does not require hazard pictograms or signal word.
Workplace labels must be present on hazardous products in the following situations:
- For products produced onsite
- When the product is transferred from one container to another
- When a worker’s first language is not English or French
- To replace labels that have been lost or damaged during transport
Workplace labels must contain:
- Product Identifier (product name)
- Information for the safe handling of the product
- Statement that the SDS is available
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