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Hazardous Substances

On December 1, 2017 the Health and Safety at Work (Hazardous Substances) Regulations 2017 will come into force.

Some of the key changes include:


There is a new mandatory requirement to keep an inventory of all of your hazardous substances used, handled, manufactured or stored in the workplace, including hazardous waste.

Safety Data Sheets:

Safety Data Sheets are a key source of information about managing your hazardous substances. You must have a Safety Data Sheet for all hazardous substances in your workplace, regardless of the quantity you hold (some exceptions apply).

Information, instruction, training and supervision:

The Regulations have specific requirements around providing information, instruction, supervision and training to make sure workers know how to safely use, handle and store the hazardous substances in their workplace.

Emergency preparation:

You should be managing your risks to avoid an emergency, but it’s equally important to plan for one. The Regulations set out specific requirements for this. This includes understanding procedures to deal with emergencies.

Labelling containers of hazardous substances (including hazardous waste):

There are new requirements for making sure that hazardous substance containers in the workplace are labelled, including process vessels; as well as maintaining the labels on hazardous substances supplied to you.


These continue to be an important part of hazardous substances management, as they warn other people in the workplace and emergency services that hazardous substances are on site.

Refer to Worksafe for further information

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