Hazardous substances

Labelling hazardous substances (WMS or GHS)

There is a new appointment to categorize and label chemicals. This convention is named the Globally Harmonized System of classification and labelling of chemicals (GHS).

The ‘old’ labelling rules were in the Environmentally Hazardous Substances Act (In Dutch: Wet Milieugevaarlijke stoffen: WMS). This act is lifted. Enformcement of GHS is regulated by the Environmental Management Act (In Dutch: Wet Milieubeheer: WM).

With GHS the familiar orange hazard symbols and the associated risk phrases (R-sentences) and safety phrases (S-phrases) disappear.

They are replaced by new hazard labels and Hazard statements (H-statementes). and Precautionary statements (P-statements).

The GHS has been in effect since 2009 in Europe, but there is a transition period until 2017.

After 2017 no more chemical products with old labels are allowed.

A simplified overview of the old and new labels has been included below.

For a detailed overview of the old and new labels and hazard statements see: Overview hazard classes and hazard categories.


Old label

New label

label

label

Explosive

Oxiderend

oxi

Oxidising

Zeer licht ontvlambaar

flame

Flammable

Zeer vergiftig

toxi

Acute toxicity

Corrosief of bijtend

corrosive

Corrosive

Irriterend

irritation

Toxicity, irritation, sensitisation

Milieugevaarlijk

environment

hazardous to the aquatic environment


long term

long-term toxicity

(for example carcinogenicity, toxic to reproduction etc)


pressure

gases under pressure