Safety Data Sheet layout
The layout of Safety Data Sheets (SDSs) is given in REACH Annex II and comprises 16 sections, and a further 49 sub-sections and an Annex (for REACH registered substances).
These headings and sub-sections cannot be omitted from a Safety Data Sheet, apart from either Section 3.1 or 3.2, which is for either Substances or Mixtures as appropriate, with the irrelevant section omitted. The Annex is only required for REACH-registered substances, and is voluntary for mixtures containing REACH-registered substance components).
Every single applicable heading on the SDS must have information after it, and cannot be left blank (even if it is “no data available”, or “not applicable”.
- SECTION 1: Identification of the substance/mixture and of the company/undertaking
- SECTION 2: Hazards identification
- SECTION 3: Composition/information on ingredients
- SECTION 4: First aid measures
- SECTION 5: Firefighting measures
- SECTION 6: Accidental release measures
- SECTION 7: Handling and storage
- SECTION 8: Exposure controls/personal protection
- SECTION 9: Physical and chemical properties
- SECTION 10: Stability and reactivity
- SECTION 11: Toxicological information
- SECTION 12: Ecological information
- SECTION 13: Disposal considerations
- SECTION 14: Transport information
- SECTION 15: Regulatory information
- SECTION 16: Other information
- Annex (for REACH registered substances only, voluntary for mixtures containing REACH-registered substances).
A full list of the sections and sub-sections can be downloaded here: List of mandatory SDS headings and sub-headings.
The SDS should also contain the following information:
- It should be identified as a Safety Data Sheet, or SDS
- The SDS must include the latest compilation date and version number in the header (or footer). If this is the first compilation, the version number can be omitted (although it is usually better to call it e.g. version 1.0, for the avoidance of doubt). The date should be the compilation date and not the date the SDS was printed, otherwise it will be very confusing for your end users (you can put a printing date elsewhere on the SDS, but it is recommended that you include appropriate text e.g. “SDS print date” or “date of printing” or similar).
- It should include page numbers, ideally page x of y (because you can tell if any pages are missing)
- If you deal with other countries, you may also want to include information on the language and country of supply, e.g. “English language for United Kingdom; or “English language for Eire”; or “French language for Belgium”. (This is a suggestion to help you manage your SDSs, and not mandatory in any way).
The language used in the SDS should be “clear and concise, avoiding jargon and acronyms “. Any acronyms used should be listed with their full meaning in Section 16 of the SDS.
SDSs should not make any misleading claims, see https://ttenvironmenta.wpengine.com/clp-knowledgebase/misleading-claims-on-clp-label-or-sds/ .