Has OSHA Cited You for Noncompliance With GHS? Because They Can, if You're Not Ready...

Has OSHA Cited You for Noncompliance With GHS? Because They Can, if You're Not Ready...

By Stephen Friedeck
Friday, June 20, 2014 - 1:40pm

CONTENT: Article

In a memorandum issued by the Directorate of Enforcement Programs at the U.S. Department of Labor, Director Thomas Galassi states, "Beginning December 2, 2013, if an employer has not provided the training required by the H[azard] C[ommunication] S[tandard], citations shall be issued for training deficiencies under 1910.1200(h) of HCS 2012." He continues with a list of basic expectations that companies need to keep in mind.

1.) If an employee has a chance of being exposed to chemicals, they must be trained.

2.) Training of the above employees does not diminish the already present need for training based on previous HCS requirements. Those employees must also be trained on the old system while GHS is being implemented.

3.) After the training deadline, "December 1, 2013, employers that have not provided the updated training on SDSs and labels may be cited under 1910.1200(h)(3)(iv) of HCS 2012."

Ok, so, you may be cited. What does that actually mean? It is tough to say for sure what the immediate impact to companies has been. OSHA's enforcement arm is actively citing companies according to contacts within MiOSHA. While the impacts are not yet known, recent publish of citation and fine data could be enough to put a flame under your seat. If nothing else, it may help you make the case to your management that OSHA is serious about violations and that information could be made public.

According to Industrial Safety & Hygiene News (ISHN), OSHA issued 6,138 citations and penalized companies a total of $3.14 million dollars for the fiscal year ending in September 2013. I expect that since this new requirement exists, OSHA has already added it to their audit check list. They note that the "Hazard Communication Standard of '83 gave the workers the "right to know," but the new Globally Harmonized System gives workers the "right to understand." That may be the best way to sum up this new regulation that I've seen. The article may be found here:


The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) has worked to ensure our industry is prepared to cope with this requirement. If you are looking for a place to get trained and you have the ability to complete the training on the web perhaps what we've established could work for you. In cooperation with ChemADVISOR, AIAG offers a relatively low cost solution for training. If you would like to know more, please check out the course which may be found here:


2013 pricing is currently being offered with a maximum cost per class of $60. If you're an AIAG member, the cost is $40.

I hope that this post assists in your ability to understand and implement this regulation within your company. If there are any questions or concerns please feel free to comment and let's have a reasonable conversation about it.