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MWF 125: MWF Health & Safety, and Introduction to GHS

October 01, 2013
Fred Passman
Annual Meeting
Online Only Articles

Annual Meeting Education Course Feature

Metalworking Fluids 125: MWF Health and Safety, and Introduction to Global Harmonized Standards 

Course Chair: Fred Passman 

Instructors: Fred Passman, Eugene White, Mick Wragg, Neil Canter, and John Howell

If you’ve attended STLE’s MWF 125 course before, it is now time to come back!  The course will be presented on Sunday, 18 May 2014 during the 2014 Annual Meeting at Disney Contemporary Resorts, Lake Buena Vista, Florida.  The module titles for the morning portion of the course will be familiar to folks who have joined us previously.  However, all of the modules have been overhauled and updated.  Moreover, as indicated by the changed course title, the afternoon program is all new. 

With global harmonized standards (GHS) deadlines looming, the Metalworking Fluid Education and Training Subcommittee agreed that STLE’s membership had an urgent need to receive current and relevant information to help them navigate their way through the OSHA’s revised Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) which requires that material safety data sheets (MSDS) be converted to the new Safety Data Sheet (SDS) format by 01 June 2015 and that all employees receive initial SDS training by 01 December 2013.

But let’s take a step back and look at the morning modules first.  The course will open with Dr. Eugene White (Milacron Products) introducing the topic of industrial hygiene.  Industrial hygiene is the scientific discipline that drives safety initiatives, programs and oversight.  The metalworking environment poses a number of unique safety issues.  After ensuring that participants understand the fundamental concepts, Dr. White will apply them to explain how best industrial hygiene practices can minimize the risks associated with the use of water-miscible metalworking fluids (MWF). 

Risk reduction is one of the central elements of creating a safe work environment.  Risk is a function of hazard (how dangerous an activity or substance is) and exposure (the degree to which individuals come into contact with a hazard).  The second module will focus on chemical hazards.  During the MWF Toxicology module, Mick Wragg (Lubrizol Corp.) will enable participants to understand how toxicological testing is used to estimate the hazards associated with exposure of chemical substances.  He’ll explain the primary ways (routes) people are exposed to chemicals and the relationship between exposure dose (concentration of the substance to which workers might be exposed), route and duration.  During this session, Mr. Wragg, will provide an overview of the numerous types of toxicological tests used to determine chemical health hazards and will ties all of these pieces together by explaining how toxicity profiles can be used to develop less toxic MWF formulations that still meet end-users’ performance requirements.

Having laid a foundation of industrial hygiene and toxicology, the program will turn to MWF mist.  I’ll first review the factors that contribute to mist generation – short version: energy in; mist out.  Next I’ll explain the health risks associated with exposure to MWF mists.  Picking up on the themes initiated during the first two sessions, I’ll reinforce the concept that risk reduction depends on a combination of minimizing of exposure and hazard and focus on strategies for reducing exposure.  We’ll wrap up the risk module with a case study.

Bioaerosols are a significant component of MWF mists.  Moreover, bioaerosols cause a range of industrial diseases from mild allergy symptoms to potentially life-threatening hypersensitivity pneumonitis.  The Health Effects of MWF Microbes will focus on the microbes and biomolecules commonly found in MWF mist. As in the MWF module, we’ll provide an understanding of the risk and recommend strategies for minimizing that risk.  In the process, we’ll pop a few myth balloons – myths about what constitutes adequate MWF microbial contamination control.  Microbes provide us with the fermentation process on which we depend for innumerable foods and beverages. Consequently, it is fitting that the microbiology module will wrap up just in time for lunch.

Dr. Neil Canter will launch the afternoon program with an overview of GHS and its implications for companies in the MWF industry.  He will offer a brief history of the guiding principles behind GHS and the path that brought about its implementation in Europe, North America and globally.  The focus of Dr. Canter’s module will be on the changes that companies are having to make in order to achieve full GHS implementation.  This module will set the stage for the topics to be covered through the rest of the course-day.  

In 2012, OSHA updated 29CFR1910.1200 the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) in order to align the standard with GHS.  Of particularly interest to STLE’s members, Appendix D to the revised HCS provides a detailed outline of what information must be provided in each section of the new SDS.  Mick Wragg will return to the podium and walk course participants through the Appendix D guidance.  For formulators, understanding Appendix D will help you to identify less toxic end components in order to help you to produce products that will be marketable globally.  End-users will learn how to find critical product safety information such as first aid, firefighting, and accidental release measures.  Unlike its predecessor, the MSDS, the new, sixteen section SDS is standardized so that a particular section number will always contain the same type of information.  For example, a product’s physical and chemical properties will always be found in SDS Section 9.    By the end of Mr. Wragg’s presentation, course participants will be able to comfortably navigate through an SDS.

Perhaps the most challenging part of the SDS is Section 2 Hazard(s) Identification.  The process is a bit confusing for pure chemicals and becomes quite complex when assessing the hazards of mixtures.  Dr. John Howell (GHS Resources), will untie this Gordian knot during his presentation of Module 7.  Dr. Howell will explain the classification guidance contained in 29CFR1910.1200 Appendices A and B so that by the end of this session, participants will have a good understanding of how mixtures of chemicals – such as MWF – receive their hazard classification. 

Following the ancient adage that a picture is worth a thousand words, Mr. Wragg will wrap up the course by explaining the new family of pictograms that are mandated in 29CFR1910.1200 Appendix C.  These pictograms are to appear on product labels and SDS.  The new pictograms are linked to types of hazards and the level of danger posed by each hazard.  Moreover, there is a hierarchy of pictograms such that certain pictograms can supersede others.   Appendix C specifies hazard categories, signal words, hazard statements along with specific language for prevention, response, storage and disposal.  By the end of the final session, participants will be able to recognize SDS and label pictograms, and have an understanding of the hazard information they are meant to convey.

As with all of STLE’s education courses, MWF 125 will be brimming with new and vital information for all metalworking industry stakeholders from the apprentice pipefitter to the most senior managers.  As a 100-level STLE course, MWF 125 assumes no prior knowledge.  Each module begins with an explanation of the definitions of key terms and builds on the information provided within the module or previous MWF 125 modules.  This educational strategy makes the course user friendly for the broadest audience so that regardless of a participant’s background, they will leave the course having learned important new information.  All of the instructors are recognized experts in their respective disciplines and have been working in the metalworking industry for at least 20+ years. Just as importantly, everyone on the instructor staff has built an excellent reputation as a public speaker – skilled at sharing information with audiences whose members’ experience ranges from absolute neophyte to seasoned expert.  On behalf of the MWF 125 team, I invite you all to join us for an exciting, informative, and timely course.

Fred Passman is the President of BCA, Inc. His contact information can be found in our membership database. More information on the AM Education Courses will be posted in the coming months.

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