Safety Data Sheets (SDS)
The purpose of a Safety Data Sheet (SDS), formerly known as Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), is to provide information on the hazards of working with a chemical and procedures that should be used to ensure safety. SDSs are a primary source of information regarding chemical hazards and handling. SDSs have been standardized under the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labeling Chemicals system: this system provides a consistent and agreed upon criteria for the classification of chemical hazards. SDS may still vary in information, for example one manufacturer might provide the GHS Hazard codes (H-codes) and their associated hazard statements while another may choose to omit the GHS H-codes. Note: if the SDS only has the hazard statement, this can be translated to the corresponding H-code.
State and Federal law require that employers obtain an SDS for each hazardous substance they use or store and make the SDS available to employees. The PI/instructor is responsible for training each employee/person working in their research and/or teaching laboratory on the SDSs for each chemical used or handled; signed training records should be readily available upon inspection.
Note: the PI/instructor is also responsible for training on Standard Operating Procedures (UCOP and lab specific SOPs); signed training records should be readily available upon inspection.
Chemical Safety Data Sheets
- SDS Fact Sheet
- How to read an SDS
- OSHA Brief: Safety Data Sheets
- Glossary of SDS Terms
- Globally Harmonized System (GHS) Hazard codes and statements
Chemical Safety Databases
- University of California SDS Search
- SDS Search
- Biosafety Pathogen SDSs
- National Institute of Health PubChem
- National Toxicology Program Chemical Health and Safety Database
- Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)/Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Occupational Chemical Database
- National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Pocket Guide
- Emergency Response Guidebook