Material safety data sheets (MSDSs) provide employers, employees, emergency responders, and the general public with basic information about the hazards associated with chemicals that are used in the workplace and are a part of every-day commerce. They are a primary information resource used by health, safety, and environmental professionals in communicating the hazards of chemicals and in making risk management decisions. Engineered nanomaterials represent a growing class of materials being manufactured and introduced into multiple business sectors. MSDSs were obtained from a total of 44 manufacturers using Internet search engines, and a simple ranking scheme was developed to evaluate the content of the data sheets. The MSDSs were reviewed using the ranking scheme, and categorized on the quality and completeness of information as it pertains to hazard identification, exposure controls, personal protective equipment (PPE), and toxicological information being communicated about the engineered nanomaterial. The ranking scheme used to evaluate the MSDSs for engineered nanomaterials was based on the determination that the data sheet should include information on specific physical properties, including particle size or particle size distribution, and physical form; specific toxicological and health effects; and protective measures that can be taken to control potential exposures. The first MSDSs for nanomaterials began to appear around 2006, so these were collected in the time period of 2007-2008. Comparison of MSDSs and changes over time were evaluated as MSDSs were obtained again in 2010-2011. The majority (67%) of the MSDSs obtained in 2010-2011 still provided insufficient data for communicating the potential hazards of engineered nanomaterials.
Nanotechnology; Hazardous-materials; Safety-education; Safety-measures; Safety-programs; Hazards; Health-hazards; Chemical-composition; Chemical-properties; Chemical-structure; Industrial-education; Industrial-hazards; Work-environment; Qualitative-analysis; Biological-effects; Personal-protective-equipment; Toxic-effects; Physical-properties