Hazardous Chemicals

Hazardous and toxic substances are defined as those chemicals present in the workplace which are capable of causing harm. In this definition, the term “chemicals” includes dusts, mixtures, and common materials such as paints, fuels, and solvents. OSHA currently regulates exposure to approximately 400 substances. The OSHA Chemical Sampling Information (CSI) file contains listings for approximately 1,500 substances; the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) Chemical Substances Inventory lists information on more than 62,000 chemicals or chemical substances; some libraries maintain files of material safety data sheets (MSDS) for more than 100,000 substances. Behavior Safety Associates, LLC trains your employees in the use, handling, storage and disposal of hazardous chemicals, as well as assisting your organization with chemical inventory, and acquisition and maintaining MSDS directories.

It is not possible to address all the hazards associated with each of these chemicals in this safety and health topics page, however, material safety data sheets (MSDS) provide information about chemicals in your workplace. A material safety data sheet (MSDS) (also known as a COSHH data sheet in the United Kingdom) is a form with data regarding the properties of a particular substance. MSDSs are intended to provide workers and emergency personnel with procedures for handling or working with that substance in a safe manner, and includes information such as physical data (melting point, boiling point, flash point, etc.), toxicity, health effects, first aid, reactivity, storage, disposal, protective equipment, and spill-handling procedures. MSDS (material safety data sheets) are a widely used system for cataloging information on chemicals, chemical compounds, and chemical mixtures. MSDS information may include instructions for the safe use and potential hazards associated with a particular material or product.

Note: Twenty-five states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have OSHA-approved State Plans and have adopted their own standards and enforcement policies. For the most part, these States adopt standards that are identical to Federal OSHA. However, some States have adopted different standards applicable to this topic or may have different enforcement policies.


Click here to view the OSHA list of hazardous chemicals