|OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.
June 9, 2011
Dr. Danish Jamal
Head: R&D Department
Suprabha Protective Products Pvt. Ltd.
1st Floor, Bhandari Apartment
Dear Dr. Jamal:
Thank you for your October 14, 2010, letter to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Your letter was referred to the Directorate of Enforcement Programs for a response. We apologize for the delay in responding to your request. You have a specific question regarding vapor corrosion inhibitor (VCI) products that your company manufactures, and the applicability of OSHA's Hazard Communication standard (HCS), 29 CFR 1910.1200. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation only of the requirements herein, and may not be applicable to any situation not delineated within your original correspondence. Your question has been paraphrased below, followed by our reply:
Question:Would VCI papers and VCI films be considered "articles" by definition under OSHA's Hazard Communication standard?
Reply: For VCI papers and
films to qualify as "articles" they must satisfy the requirements specified in
the definition of an article at 29 CFR 1910.1200(c):
"Article" means a manufactured item other than a fluid or particle: (i) which is formed to a specific shape or design during manufacture; (ii) which has end use function(s) dependent in whole or in part upon its shape or design during end use; and (iii) which under normal conditions of use does not release more than very small quantities, e.g., minute or trace amounts of a hazardous chemical (as determined under paragraph (d) of this section), and does not pose a physical hazard or health risk to employees.
In your letter you indicated that these products do not pose a physical hazard to workers. Further, you indicate that the chemicals used to coat or impregnate paper and films are organic, non-hazardous, and under normal conditions of use do not release more than very small quantities. However, from the information you provided, it is difficult to understand how your products will be handled by downstream workers, the chemicals that are being released, or the amount of worker exposure. This information is an important part of the hazard determination process and may help as you ascertain how the products in question should be addressed. If a manufacturer makes a reasonable determination that its product satisfies the requirements specified at 29 CFR 1910.1200(c), including that it poses no health risk or physical hazard to downstream workers, the product would then be considered an article.
Thank you for your interest in occupational safety and health. We hope you find this information helpful. OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards, and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can continue to consult OSHA's Web site at www.osha.gov. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the Office of Health Enforcement at 202-693-2190.
Thomas Galassi, Director
Directorate of Enforcement Programs