The Three Parts of WHMIS

WHMIS has three very important elements that were designed specifically to provide workers with critical information needed to protect themselves from overexposure or misuse of hazardous materials.

 1. Labels

The purpose of WHMIS labels are to warn workers that there are potential hazards with the materials which the labels reside on.  they also provide information on how to eliminate or significantly reduce those hazards.

Supplier Labels: Suppliers are required to provide supplier labels to all parties who purchase controlled products from them.  These materials should not be accepted unless a label is available.

Workplace Labels: Employers are required to ensure that all hazardous materials in the workplace contain a workplace label displaying the information required by the legislation.

2. Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)

A Material Safety Data Sheet is a document that contains specific technical information about a particular product.

This includes, but is not limited to, information about the product’s use, storage, handling, emergency procedures and very important safety information that a user must understand.  The MSDS contains much more information about the material than the label.

3. WHMIS Training & Education

All Canadian workers who work with or may be exposed to hazardous materials are required to be provided with WHMIS training and education.  Training must include general knowledge of WHMIS fundamentals as well as specific information relative to the actual workplace.