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Right to Know - Hazard Communication Program

The Michigan Right-to-Know Law was designed to inform employers and employees of potentially hazardous materials in the workplace and how to protect themselves against exposure. To help ensure your safety on campus and to comply with State and Federal Law, all persons working for Delta College are required to review the Hazard Communication and Right-To-Know program. Compliance with the law depends on you!

Step 1: Read The Michigan Right To Know Law -- You, Delta College, & Safety which describes the law as it pertains to Delta College.

Step 2: Review the Right To Know on-line training program. Please allow approximately 15 minutes to complete the entire audio presentation. A text transcript is available.  If at any point the video appears to stall or pause, please press the play button.

If you have additional questions, please contact Facilities Management at or phone 989-686-9209.

The Michigan Right To Know Law
You, Delta College, & Safety

The Delta College Hazard Communication program will assist all employees:

  • to become familiar with the physical and health hazards of chemicals & to observe in the workplace
  • to become familiar with the protection methods including personal protective equipment and emergency procedures as recommended on the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) 
  • to locate SDS and to understand and to utilize them in the workplace
  • to become familiar with the safety related items, familiarize with product labels and how to utilize the information, and the proper use of safety equipment
  • by informing employees of hazardous chemicals at the College as written in this hazard communication program
  • safe work practices and the use of personal protective equipment in relation to the hazardous chemicals in the workplace
  • in understanding responsibility for specific information regarding the Michigan Right To Know Law & in recognizing Delta College will provide assistance to promote safety in the workplace

Program Coordination & Responsibility

  1. Task: Coordination of program with the authority for implementation
    Director of Facilities Management or Representative
  2. Task: Training and education of all employees for the handling and use of hazardous materials
    Human Resources, Individual Building Administrator, and/or Immediate Supervisor
  3. Task: Development & Maintenance of written Hazard Communication Program and Campus-wide master inventory
    Human Resources & Facilities Management Risk Management Coordinator 
  4. Task: Receiving materials, labeling, and distribution of hazardous materials
    Operations & Maintenance Manager and Individual Building Administrators
  5. Task: Obtaining, monitoring, distributing, and maintaining SDS
    Facilities Management Risk Management Coordinator and Individual Building Administrators
  6. Task: Inventory of all hazardous materials in college-owned buildings
    Individual Building Administrators, Department Heads, Area Supervisors and/or Administrators
  7. Task: Annual review of labeling system
    Director of Facilities Management or Representative
  8. Task: Informing outside contractors of potential hazards when providing a service on campus or at a campus center and obtaining a list of potentially hazardous materials a contractor may use on campus or at a campus center
    Director of Facilities Management or Representative

Hazard Communication Program

The following written Hazard Communication Program has been established for Delta College. The Program is available by contacting Facilities Management or the Office of the Individual Building Administrator.

I. Hazard Determination
Delta College will be relying on Safety Data sheets (SDS) from material suppliers to meet hazard determination requirements.

II. Labeling

  1. The Operations and Maintenance Manager or Individual Building Administrator will be responsible for proper labeling of all incoming containers.
  2. All incoming labels shall be checked for identity, hazard, warning, and name and address of responsible party.
  3. Product container labels for sole use in any laboratory shall not be removed or defaced.
  4. Each supervisor shall be responsible for labeling all portable containers used in their service or work area with identity and hazard warnings. (Hazardous chemicals in labeled containers transferred to portable containers intended only for immediate use by the employee who performs the transfer, do not require labeling.)
  5. Piping systems containing hazardous chemicals will be labeled at access points and every ten (10) feet where the piping is eight (8) feet or closer to employee contact.
  6. The effectiveness of the labeling system will be reviewed annually by the Operations & Maintenance Manager, or a representative, and be updated as required.

III. Safety Data Sheets (SDS)

  1. Facilities Management is responsible for compiling the master SDS file housed in the Facilities Management Administrative Office. Facilities Management continually updates the College's inventory of potentially hazardous materials used or stored in campus buildings. This process is necessary to remain in compliance with SARA Title III - Emergency Planning and Community-Right-To-Know. Departments are notified of their scheduled inventory and are provided the materials necessary for completing the inventory of products stored or used in their areas.
  2. Master copies of SDS will be kept in the Facilities Management Office, B163. Departmental binders are provided to those areas using or storing potentially hazardous materials. The binders contain the SDS and the documents necessary to promote the safe and proper use of products.
  3. The process of maintaining SDS files is on-going. To help ensure files are kept current, employees are encouraged to forward information or SDS regarding new products to Facilities Management.
  4. Copies of SDS received with incoming shipments of hazardous chemicals for use in a laboratory will be kept in the master MSDS file and in the MSDS file for the laboratory in which the chemicals will be stored.
  5. SDS will be available for review to all employees during each workshift. Copies will be available upon request to the supervisor.
  6. Business Services shall make requests for SDS on all purchase orders.
  7. Facilities Management shall provide supervisors with the required MIOSHA Right to Know posters and postings notifying employees of new or revised SDS within five (5) days of a receipt of a new or revised SDS. This posting will be for a minimum of ten (10) days.

IV. Employee Information and Training

  1. Human Resources shall coordinate and maintain records of training conducted at Delta College.
  2. New employees will receive Right To Know information about:
    • chemicals and their hazards in their work areas
    • how to lessen or prevent exposure to these hazardous chemicals
    • what Delta College has done to lessen or prevent worker's exposure to these chemicals
    • procedures to follow if they are exposed to these chemicals
    • how to read and interpret labels and SDS
  3. After reviewing the information, each employee will complete a Right To Know Employee Training Record.

V. Hazardous Non-Routine Tasks

  1. Periodically, employees may be required to perform non-routine tasks such cleaning tanks, opening pipes, or other maintenance operations which could result in exposure to a hazardous chemical.
  2. Prior to starting work on a non-routine task, each employee performing the task will be given information by his supervisor about the hazards involved. This information will include specific chemical hazards, protective safety measures and measures the college has taken to lessen the hazards, including ventilation, respirators, presence of another employee, and emergency procedures.
  3. It is college policy that no employee will begin work on any non-routine task without first receiving a safety briefing from his supervisor.

VI. Informing Contractors

  1. It is the responsibility of the Director of Facilities Management to provide contractors and their employees with the following information:
    • hazardous chemicals to which they may be exposed while on the job
    • measures the employees may take to lessen the risks
    • steps the college has taken to lessen the risks
    • SDS for all hazardous chemicals are on file in the Facilities Management Office and the Office of the Individual Building Administrator.
    • procedures to follow if they are exposed
  2. The Director of Facilities Management will coordinate with the supervisor to ensure that the contractor's employees are given this information prior to entering the work site.

VII. List of Hazardous Chemicals

The hazardous chemicals used at Delta College are maintained in a database including the product name, manufacturer, supplier, and location of use/storage. The list and contents are available at the Facilities Management Office.

  1. Chemicals and Related Products
    The chemicals and related products (such as gases, oils, lubricants, and paints), the company or source from which the products are obtained, and the hazardous product content are listed in Table I Chemicals and Related Products. Further information on each hazardous chemical noted can be obtained by reviewing the SDS in the Facilities Management Office.
  2. Metals and Related Products
    Metals and related products, such as abrasives and grinding wheels, present no significant physical or health hazards under normal handling conditions. However, processing of these products (grinding, buffing, heating, forging, welding, etc.) may result in the potential for exposure to airborne particulate, dust, or fume. The metals and related products, the company or source from which they are obtained, and the hazardous chemicals which might be contained in the particulate, dust, or fume are listed in Table II Metals and Related Products.

Further information is available in the Facilities Management Office and the Office of the Individual Building Administrator.

Common Terminology for Hazard Properties

It is in the best interest of the employee's health and safety to become familiar with the common terms appearing on product labels and/or SDS used when describing the hazardous properties of a chemical substance. Following is a list of common terms and their definitions:

Acute - Severe, often dangerous conditions in which rapid changes occur.

Boiling Point - Temperature at which vapor pressure of a liquid equals atmospheric pressure or at which the liquid changes to a vapor. The boiling point is usually expressed in degrees Fahrenheit. If a flammable material has a low boiling point, it indicates a special fire hazard.

Carcinogen - Substance or physical agent that may cause cancer in animals.

Chronic Exposure - Prolonged exposure occurring over a period of days, weeks, or years.

Combustible - Liquids having a flash point at or above 100 degrees F, (37.8 degrees C), or that will burn and do not ignite as easily as flammable liquids. However, combustible liquids can be ignited under certain circumstances and must be handled with caution. Substances, such as wood, paper, etc., are termed "Ordinary Combustibles".

Corrosive - Substance that causes visible destruction or permanent changes in human skin tissue at the site of contact or is highly corrosive to steel.

Evaporation Rate - Rate at which a liquid material is known to evaporate, usually associated with flammable materials. The faster a material will evaporate, the sooner it will become concentrated in the air, creating an explosive/combustible mixture or toxic concentration, or both.

Flammable Liquid - According to the DOT and NFPA a flammable liquid is one that has a flash point below 100 degrees F. (See Flash Point)

Flash Point - Lowest temperature at which a liquid gives off enough vapor to form an ignitable mixture and burn when a source of ignition, (sparks, open flames, cigarettes), is present. Two tests (open cup and closed cup) are used to determine the flash point. The test method is indicated on the SDS after the flash point. 

Incompatible - Term applied to two substances to indicate one material cannot be mixed with the other without the possibility of a dangerous reaction.

Irritant - Substance producing irritating effect when contacting skin, eyes, nose, or respiratory system.

Melting Point - The temperature at which a solid changes to liquid.

Oxidizer - Substance giving up oxygen easily to stimulate combustion of organic material.

Sensitizer - Substance that may cause no reaction in a person during initial exposures, but afterwards further exposures will cause an allergic response to the substance.

Solubility Rate - Degree to which a material can be dissolved by a solvent.

Vapor Pressure - Number describing pressure a saturated vapor will exert on top of its own liquid in a closed container. The higher the vapor pressure, the lower the boiling point; and, therefore, the more dangerous the material can be, if flammable.

Hazardous Chemical Overexposure

Hazardous chemical overexposure demands immediate attention. Check the SDS for first aid instructions. Know first aid procedures. Act Fast...Every Second Counts. Here are a few general rules to follow:

Poisoning (inhaled)

  • Remove victim to fresh air immediately.
  • If breathing has stopped, administer artificial respiration.
  • If breathing and pulse have stopped, and if you're properly trained, perform CPR.

 Chemical Burns

  • Immediately flush exposed skin with water; continue for 15-20 minutes. Don't scrub. Remove contaminated clothing.
  • Cover burn with sterile dressing.
  • Don't apply ointments or neutralizing solution.
  • Flush eye for at least 15 minutes if exposed to chemicals.


  • Check for symptoms, including clammy, pale skin; rapid, faint pulse; quick, irregular breathing; weakness; nausea.
  • Treat causes of shock (breathing stopped, burns, etc.)
  • Keep victim quiet and in a prone position with feet slightly elevated (unless victim has difficulty breathing).
  • Place victim on side, if unconscious. (If you suspect a neck or spinal injury, do not move victim unless absolutely necessary).
  • Cover only enough to maintain body heat.

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