Wilhelmsen Ships Service demonstrates importance of MSDS

Wilhelmsen Ships Service has developed a customer focused Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) setting an example which can be replicated by other technical service and product providers globally.

Wilhelmsen Ships Service has developed a customer focused Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) setting an example which can be replicated by other technical service and product providers globally.

The Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), is an industry standard method of documentation whose purpose is to provide information on how to work with hazardous materials such as chemicals or gases, as safely as possible.

Wilhelmsen Ships Service, which offers a standard range of marine chemicals, created its functioning MSDS by comparing the EU regulations with the US and Canadian Regulations, and by combining them to create a draft lay-out for an MSDS as well as product label which was presented to various authorities in Europe, the USA and Canada. After discussions with these authorities and some changes in the lay-out, the company’s MSDSs and product labels are now accepted in the United States, Canada and Europe, which covers the company’s busiest trading areas.

Wilhelmsen Ships Service’s solution coincides with the worldwide implementation of the new GHS (Global Harmonized System) regulation, which was developed by the United Nations. The GHS will eliminate the differences in classification, labelling and safety information and will ensure a globally harmonized hazard classification and compatible labelling system, including MSDSs and easily understandable symbols.

The deadline for compliance with GHS is 31 December 2010 for pure chemicals, and for other products 1 June 2015.

An MSDS does not just describe which safety precautions should be taken and which safety equipment should be used but also gives information relating to first-aid measures, storage, handling and fire fighting procedures. The MSDS is useful for the end user of the product as well as for transport companies, warehouse personnel and emergency rescue teams plus anyone else coming into contact with the product, from manufacturer to the end user and anyone else in between.

By introducing a unique label with an integrated complete 16 section MSDS to every product, as well as a product data sheet Wilhelmsen Ships Service are sure that users of its chemicals always have ready access to important information such as user instructions and what to do in case of an accident with the product. These labels have proven to be very successful and are very much appreciated by the customers.