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The Material Safety Data Sheet

The Safety Data Sheet (SDS)(Safety Data Sheet or SDS) is a form containing data on the properties of a chemical substance, its risks and hazards (and how to reduce them). In North America, it’s known as an MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet).

The MSDS of a substance classified as hazardous (to man or the environment) must always be available and accessible to the user.
They are generally associated with the product and available online (Web) (downloadable or searchable) from the distributor’s website.

Laboratory safety processes usually require a hard copy of the SDS they file, to be consulted if the online version is not available.
A product’s SDS should be consulted before purchase, to ensure that a suitable storage area is available.

At global level, the international standard ISO 11014 defines the content and layout of safety data sheets. Sixteen sections make up the layout:

  1. Identification of chemical product and company
  2. Hazard identification
  3. Composition / information on ingredients
  4. First aid measures
  5. Fire-fighting measures
  6. Accidental release measures
  7. Handling and storage
  8. Exposure controls and personal protection
  9. Physical and chemical properties
  10. Stability and reactivity
  11. Info