McAfee & Taft RegLINC - July 2012: Industry groups voice concern over OSHA’s change to HazCom standard by Heidi Slinkard Brasher

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[author: Heidi Slinkard Brasher]

Several industry groups – including the American Petroleum Institute, CropLife America, American Tort Reform Association, National Oilseed Processors Association, and American Chemistry Counsel – have petitioned a federal appeals court to review OSHA’s final rule revising the HazCom standard.

Industry concerns cited include:

  • Labeling conflicts between the new standard requirements and pesticide labeling requirements under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA).
  • Inclusion of combustible dust as an “unclassified hazard” required to be listed on SDS/label (which was adjusted in the final rule by inclusion as a “hazardous chemical” and not as a “hazard not otherwise classified”).
  • A desire for a 5-year phase-in period.
  • 20% classification threshold for “chemical mixtures.”

The Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has declined to follow OSHA’s lead, and instead withdrew its proposal to harmonize hazardous materials regulations with the GHS, citing concerns regarding liquids currently classified as “combustible.”