Firearms related businesses know that there are many hazards associated with the industry. However, Hazardous Chemicals can often be overlooked. If you are doing any sort of gunsmithing, manufacturing, or if you have a range then your business is definitely at risk for OSHA Hazardous Chemicals violations.
Lead is already at the forefront of most firearms business’ mind. However, under the OSHA’s Hazard Communication or HazCom standard you are required to keep an inventory of all your hazardous chemicals and label those chemicals with very specific information. You must also train your employees on how to interpret the labels and where they can find Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Safety Data Sheets (SDSs).
SDSs must be made available to your employees during business hours and you must be able to show that all your SDS documents are up to date. PPE requires that you document not only what equipment is available, but the hazards that equipment is supposed to protect against and how you arrived at that conclusion. For instance if you issue an employee a dust mask, while color case hardening a receiver, you need to be able to show that you analyzed the hazards present and that a dust mask meets the required levels of protection.
As of June 1, 2016, OSHA’s new standard related to HazCom went into full effect. If you have not already done so, it is important that you familiarize yourself with these new regulations. Many of the hazard classification labels are now outdated and obsolete. Even more worrisome is that the numbering systems that indicated the level of hazard have now been reversed. Your business was responsible to have your employees trained in the new labeling and documentation requirements by December 1, 2013.
Here at Firearms Industry Consulting Group, we have the expertise to provide your business with an OSHA Safety Solution for HazCom. We can perform a Chemical Inventory, Develop proper labeling procedures, and Train your employees. We have the ability to train your entire staff or even single employees as they hire one. If desired we can even write your HazCom Program.