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Globally Harmonized System (GHS)

(Reference Hazard Communication Program)

Texas State University has a written program (Texas State University Hazard Communication Program) that complies with OSHA standards and the Texas Hazard Communication Act for hazardous chemicals.  This program is available from the Environmental Health, Safety & Risk Management Office. It requires the following:

  • Employee training (including recognition of signs of exposure)
  • Labeling procedures
  • MSDSs for chemicals at each workplace
  • Instructions on how to read and interpret MSDSs
  • Chemical inventory reporting procedures
  • Record keeping requirements
  • Emergency response procedures

Refer to the Texas State University Hazard Communication Program, and other sections in this manual for detailed information on these topics.

An integral part of hazard communication is hazard identification.  Everyone who works with hazardous chemicals should know how to read and interpret hazard information. Signs, like the NFPA diamond in the illustration below, alert employees to the known hazards in a particular location.

OSHA has updated the requirements for labeling of hazardous chemicals to align with the Globally Harmonized System (GHS). As of June 1, 2015 all labels will be required to have the six elements seen in the example below.

Globally Harmonized System (GHS) Hazard Communication Labelling
 Figure 1 - Globally Harmonized System (GHS) Hazard Communication System
  1. Product Identifier – Should match the product identifier on the Safety Data Sheet
  2. Signal Word – Either use “danger” (severe) or “Warning” (less severe).
  3. Hazard Statements
  4. Precautionary Statements
  5. Supplier Identification
  6. Pictograms

See Figure 2 below for the required standard pictograms that are to be used on the label for a hazardous chemical labelled IAW the Globally Harmonized System.

Hazard Communication Standard Pictograms
Figure 2 - Hazard Communication Standard Pictograms


June 2011
Revised November 2014