11.13 – Hazard Communication

POLICY: It is the policy of Spoon River College use OSHA best practices with regard to hazard communication.


Hazardous Chemical: Per OSHA Hazard Communication Standard, a hazardous chemical is defined as:

Hazardous Waste: A waste or combination of wastes, which because of its quantity, concentration, or physical, chemical or infectious characteristics, may cause the following hazards when improperly treated, stored, used or disposed of, or otherwise managed:


  1. Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS): Manufacturers of hazardous chemicals must develop a MSDS for each hazardous chemical that they make as well as provide a copy of the MSDS to all employers who purchase the chemical.  Chemical manufacturers must include the following items on the MSDS:
    1. Describe the physical and chemical properties of the material.
    2. Its physical and health hazards.
    3. Routes of exposure.
    4. Precautions for safe use and handling.
    5. Emergency procedures.
    6. Spill control procedures.

    MSDS is available to employees, students, and visitors who use or may be exposed to the chemical and are filed in alphabetic order by the manufacturer’s name or trade name for the chemical.  A separate MSDS file is maintained in each work area for the chemicals used in that area.

  2. Labels and Other Forms of Warning: All hazardous chemical containers (other than single-use) must be prominently labeled with the chemical identity and any hazard warnings.
  3. Training: Employees, students, and visitors who will be exposed to hazardous chemicals receive training on the Spoon River College Hazard Communication policy and the identity and safe use of hazardous chemicals found in their assigned work / study area.  If a hazardous chemical is brought into the facility that has new or different hazards, the employees, students, or visitors who will use it are trained regarding the physical hazards and/or health hazards before the chemical is put into use.  The applicable Supervisor, Faculty, or his/her designee will conduct Hazard Communication Training.  Hazard Communication training emphasizes these items:
    1. review the Spoon River College Hazard Communication Plan;
    2. the hazardous properties of chemicals;
    3. health hazards and the signs and symptoms associated with exposure;
    4. procedures to protect against exposure to hazardous chemicals including personal protective equipment and its proper use and maintenance;
    5. work practices and methods to assure proper use and handling of chemicals and the procedures for responding to chemical spills and emergencies (See SRC Crisis Procedure Manual);
    6. where MSDS files are located, how to read and interpret the information on labels and MSDS, and how employees can obtain additional hazard information.
  4. Outside Contractors: Any representative of Spoon River College who bids out work will advise outside contractors of all chemical hazards that they may encounter during the course of their work and the related health and/or physical hazards.  No contractor will bring on to Spoon River College property any chemical regulated as hazardous under the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard unless the container is appropriately labeled and contractors are fully trained in the safe use, storage and handling of the chemical.  If such containers are to be left unattended, the contractor must provide Spoon River College with a current MSDS for the chemical.