Safety Data Sheets (SDS), formerly Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), provide valuable information on chemicals as well as procedures for handling and working with a substance safely. The SDS includes information such as physical data (boiling point, flash point, etc.), health effects, toxicity, first aid, storage, disposal, personal protective equipment, and spill/leak procedures.
The manufacturer or distributor of a chemical product must send material safety data sheets to the purchaser with the initial shipment of a product/hazardous chemical and with each update of the Safety data sheet. Safety data sheets will either accompany or precede the shipment. Place the SDS’s in your laboratory chemical hygiene plan or SDS binder. Include an index at the beginning of the SDS section of the binder. The manufacturer or distributor is not required to send an SDS with subsequent orders of the same product. Many manufacturers will provide up to date SDS via a website.
Where can I find SDS for my lab?
- Look in the Chemical Hygiene or SDS binder in your lab
- Write or call the chemical manufacturer or distributor
- Conduct a Google search for the chemical name + SDS
- Access SDS sheets via the web (some links located below)
Mallinckrodt Laboratory Chemicals
Other sources of chemical information:
International Agency for Research on Cancer
NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
Interactive Learning Paradigms, Inc. (Search databases, chemical suppliers, and learn about MSDS)
Note: Some companies may require initial registration before you can access the SDS online.