Today was a different format for Safety Monday. Once a year, we are required to go through WHMIS controlled substance, by area, with the staff. So different safety talks were done for the different environments that employees work in. Area specific WHMIS were arranged and presented throughout the factory today.
Mark explained that the province is in transition to align with the GHS or Globally Harmonized System. This change makes all labelling, world wide, the same. This means that ALL hazardous material world-wide should labelled in the same format, with the same symbols. And this eliminates mistakes and misunderstanding, when employees transfer sites or simply for import and export purposes.
Key topics covered today:
- Changes to WHMIS (WHMIS 2008 vs. WHMIS 2015)
- Products labels
- Workplace labels
- SDS or Safety Data Sheets
Mark also talked about how BWS manage the SDSs and where they are stored in various sites. He made it known that a master binder of all SDS are stored off site in case of emergency. Within the BWS factory, area specific binders are kept. Inside each of those binders is an alphabetical index with the expiry dates noted so we are aware of when we need new sheets from vendors. The Joint Health & Safety Committee go through and review these sheets on a monthly basis to ensure that none have expired. Also the chemicals specific to each location are reviewed and a risk associated assessment is done.
Mark has also started a review process for the safety talks and gives out short quizzes at the end of the safety talk to check for areas people may be unclear about. Or even have staff write questions if they didn’t feel comfortable bringing it up with the group.
For more information about GHS click here http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/chemicals/ghs.html