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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Hazard communications for schools

Hazardous chemicals, which produce physical and health hazards, are ever present in schools, from paint solvents in art to chemicals in science and cleaning supplies used by custodians.

Every school must develop and implement a written hazard communication program, which the Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute of the New Jersey Department of Education says should be able to answer these questions:

* Is a list of hazardous chemicals present in your school?* Are the methods used to inform individuals of chemical hazards included in your program?
* Are the methods used to provide access to material safety data sheets included in your program?
* Are the methods use to communicate the labeling system included in your program?
* Are all containers of hazardous chemicals in your school labeled, tagged or marked?
* Is removal or defacing the labels prohibited?* If a hazardous chemical has no material safety data sheet, are attempts made to obtain one from the manufacturer?* Is effective training on hazardous chemicals provided to your staff?