How Many Sections Does an SDS Require to Meet Standards

Safety Data Sheets (SDS) are standard documents containing information on chemical hazards and safe handling procedures. They comprise 16 sections specified by the Global Harmonization System (GHS) to meet the standards.

In this article, we will explore each of the 16 sections of SDS and their short descriptions. We will discuss the order of the sections, whether all 16 units follow the same order while getting listed, and which sections are the most important. 

What Are the 16 Sections of SDS? 

SDS has 16 sections as per the Global Harmonization System (GHS). Here are the 16 sections of SDS with their short description.

1. Identification

Identification provides the chemical’s name, manufacturer, supplier, and contact information.

2.Hazard(s) Identification

Here, you’ll find the hazards associated with the chemical, its classification, prevention, response, and storage recommendations. 

3. Composition/ Data on Ingredients

This part shows the product’s chemical components, concentration, and impurities.

4. First-Aid Measures

In this part, you’ll find information on first aid procedures to take in case you get exposed to the chemical.

5. Fire-Fighting Measures

Section five shows the fire-fighting measures, including suitable extinguishing agents, protective equipment, and potential hazards.

6. Accidental Release Measures

Section six shows data on the procedures for handling the chemical. It also shows you how to contain spills and releases.

7. Handling & Storage

Number seven guides the user on safe handling and shows the perfect conditions for storage. Such include recommendations on personal protective equipment and storage conditions.

8. Exposure Controls/ Personal protection

Eight directs on the proper protective gear and apparatus when dealing with the chemical. Also, it shows the exposure limits beyond which might be disastrous.

9. Physical & Chemical Properties

Nine shows the information on the chemical’s chemical & physical properties. Such details include appearance, odor, melting and boiling points, and flammability.

10. Stability & Reactivity

This part details the reactivity & stability of the chemical and any potential hazardous reactions.

11. Toxicological Information

Part 11 shows the toxicological properties of the chemical and its potential health effects.

12. Ecological Information

Section twelve contains data on the environmental impact of the chemical. That means its potential effects on plants, animals, and ecosystems.

13. Disposal Consideration

This section guides the proper disposal methods for the chemical, including any special handling requirements.

14. Transport Data

This section provides data on the transport of the chemical. That includes any regulations, hazards, and precautions.

15. Regulatory Information

This section provides information on the chemical’s regulatory status. Such data includes relevant safety, health, and environmental regulations.

16. Other Information

This part has the relevant information not covered in the previous 15 parts.

Are the 16 Sections of SDS Always Listed in the Same Order?

Yes, the 16 sections of SDS always follow the same order specified by the Globally Harmonized System by the United Nations.

The GHS specifies the required content and format of SDSs, which includes the 16 sections listed above. The order of these sections ensures consistency and ease of use across different countries and industries.

While some SDSs may include additional sections or information specific to a particular product or use case, the 16 units listed in the GHS are mandatory for all SDSs. Any deviation from this standard format could cause confusion or incorrect chemical handling, potentially leading to safety hazards.

How Many Sections Are Not Required on an SDS?

All 16 sections of the SDS (Safety Data Sheet) are critical under the Globally Harmonized System (GHS). But sections 12, 13, 14, and 15 are nonmandatory. Under the Globally Harmonized System (GHS), sections 1-11 & 16 are mandatory. However, no elements are not required, as each one provides essential information about the chemical’s hazards and safe handling procedures.

While GPS requires all 16 sections, the level of detail provided in each area may vary depending on the chemical and its intended use. For example, a chemical with low toxicity and minimal environmental impact may require less information in 11 (Toxicological Information) and 12 (Ecological Information), respectively.

However, even if a section contains no information, it must still be in the SDS and marked as “not applicable” or “not determined” to show that the data is irrelevant or unavailable.

Does SDS Have 9 or 16 Sections?

The Safety Data Sheet (SDS) has 16 sections. The number here refers to the 9-section format of the older Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), which the 16-section SDS replaced under the Globally Harmonized System (GHS).

The MSDS was an earlier version of the SDS used in many countries before adopting the GHS. The MSDS had nine sections, which provided some basic information about the chemical, its hazards, and safe handling procedures. However, the MSDS included less detail than the current SDS.

Adopting the GHS in many countries, the involved countries mandated using the 16-section SDS format. It provides more comprehensive information about the chemical, its hazards, and safe handling procedures. The 16-section SDS format is now the globally accepted standard for SDSs.

What Are the 4 Most Important Sections of SDS?

All 16 sections of the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) are essential and provide information about a chemical’s hazards and safe handling procedures. However, the four most important sections of SDS may vary depending on the context and intended use of the chemical. The four important sections are 2, 4, 7, & 8.

Reach Out to ROI Safety Services for Help

California-based companies, are you aware of the risks involved in handling chemicals? Mishandling can lead to disastrous consequences for your employees and the environment. It’s crucial to understand the 16 sections of SDSs and follow the recommended procedures to ensure safe handling.  

At ROI Safety Services, our expert training on Safety and OSHA compliance and our top-notch safety services will protect your employees. Your employees are your firm’s critical asset, and we value their safety as much as you do. 

Call us now at (714) 520 1608 and get a quote for our services. Let us help you safeguard your employees and business from potential hazards!