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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Safety: Chemical Hazard Communication: Madison
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Chemical Hazard Communication
Madison Location

Statement of Purpose It is the policy of the USDA/Madison Location to provide a safe workplace. The Chemical Hazard Communication program shall provide a basis for achieving that goal in the use of chemical substances. This document shall apply to all chemical usage in laboratories and non-laboratories.
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Regulatory The chemical Hazard Communication Standard is found in 29 CFR 1910.1200. A copy can be found at the Location Internet Home Page at
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Implemen- tation Outline
1. Laboratories shall obtain and implement UW Chemical Safety and Disposal Guide and follow Hazard Communication as found in the Chemical Hygiene Plan. Other chemical users shall obtain and implement UW Hazard Communication Protection Plan.
2. Inventory all chemicals including pesticides, fertilizers, cleaners, and shop chemicals.
3. Obtain Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) or equivalent for chemicals on hand.
4. The MSDS shall be kept in the work place near the point of use and available at all times when work is being performed.
5. All employees, including part-time, are trained annually on Chemical Hazard program.
6. All employees will maintain warning labels on hazardous chemicals, including preparing labels for containers to which chemicals are transferred.
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1. Inventory - Having an accurate inventory is the first step in managing chemicals in the workplace. Items no longer used because of changing research needs or because they are outdated should be disposed of by using UW Safety Procedures. The Location will conduct an inventory of chemicals on hand each November.
2. The inventory should follow the ARS or UW format as used at the Madison location and include all pesticides, fertilizers, paints, oils, welding supplies, compressed gasses, pharmaceuticals, and cleansers. Each lead Scientist shall complete the inventory for their area. [Click here to download template in Microsoft Excel format]
3. After completion, the master inventory shall be kept by each scientist for reference and updating of new chemicals/products. A disk shall be sent to the LAO for each lead Scientist using chemicals. For non-laboratory chemical users, UW Safety wants a copy of your inventory. The lead Scientist should send this to UW through the LAO.
4. MSDS—The Material Safety Data Sheets shall be obtained from the manufacturer at the time of purchase. If an MSDS is needed, the request should be made at the time of purchase. When received, the MSDS should be filed alphabetically and accessible to users of the chemical. Copies can be made of the MSDS. Do not throw out old MSDS. They should be kept and archived alphabetically in case liability issues concerning past employment occur.
5. MSDS for chemicals can be obtained from a variety of sources. Sources include UW Safety Home Page, or UW Industrial Hygienist.
6. New employees will be trained in Hazard Communication (MSDS) as part of their orientation. All others shall receive training annually presented by their supervisor.
7. The policy shall be reviewed annually by the Location Safety Committee and updated as necessary.
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  • Dr. Cynthia A. Henson, RL (Cereal Crops Research Unit)
  • Dr. Philipp W. Simon, RL (Vegetable Crops Research Unit)
  • Dr. Neal P. Martin, CD (Dairy Forage & Aquaculture Research Unit)
  • Dr. Ronald D. Hatfield, RL (Cell Wall & Biology Utilization Research Unit) 
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Last Modified: 3/12/2010
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