Chemical Inventory & Safety Audit : What You Need to Know

Setting up and managing a Chemical Inventory can be a difficult task, even when you think you have done your research or have prepared yourself with a spreadsheet or list to follow. The difficulty comes when you begin attempting to cross-reference Chemicals with the Vendor SDS, which may create significant problems if you are unable to do so.

Tracking chemicals in the workplace requires detailed knowledge of all possible "hiding places". Chemicals can be found in the strangest places –and they can be easily overlooked.

It is not always obvious that certain items can also be considered "chemicals" – did you know that welding rods and certain building materials (i.e. insulation batts, bricks) may be hazardous if exposure to by-products occurs? As a result, you may not be able to perform risk assessments for the whole site. Chemicals often interact explosively with other chemicals, so storage location may be a problem if you need to have multiple chemicals with a certain distance between them. The Inventory must identify the distance between chemicals so that appropriate incompatibilities reporting can take place.

Chemical Inventory and Safety Audit made easy…

Green Lights will work with you to determine which procedures and information are necessary for your business.

We will conduct a physical inventory of all hazardous chemicals including *consumer products.

*Consumer products are products that do not require a Safety Data Sheet (SDS) when purchased by a consumer in a retail setting, however, some of these products do require an SDS when they are brought into the workplace (example: paints, hand soaps, inks)

We will compile a list including:

• Chemical name (i.e. Acetone)

• Amount – unit of measure (i.e. 1 litre)

• Container type (i.e. Glass bottle)

• Manufacturer (i.e. Aldrich)

• Exact location (i.e. Building C, Warehouse Office, Shelf A)

We will also update the chemical inventory database when you:

1) Move to a new location

2) Acquire a new hazardous chemical

3) Your inventory volumes change more than 10%

4) You remove a chemical from your inventory

  • An inventory must be maintained which identifies all hazardous substances at the workplace in quantities that may endanger workers in an emergency including hazardous products covered by WHMIS, explosives, pesticides, radioactive materials, hazardous wastes, and consumer products.
  • The inventory must identify the nature, location, and approximate quantity of all such substances, and the location of SDSs.

    IMPORTANT NOTE: A company must declare their inventory status even if there are 'zero' chemicals in stock when their inventory is conducted.
    Example of why it is necessary: National Fire Code
    A- Clause requires compliance with Table so as to ensure that the fuel 
    load of stored dangerous goods, including packaging materials, does not exceed individual storage area size
    limits for unsprinklered and sprinklered buildings

    Other areas that may need to be reviewed during a Chemical inventory or Safety Audit:

    · Placarding

    · Designated Substances

    · CAS Numbers

    · Hot-Spot Identification

    · Chemicals Incompatibility reporting

    · Hazardous Substances reporting

    · Dangerous Goods reporting

    · Radioactive materials, biological materials (or etiological agents), or controlled substances; are maintained in separate tracking systems.

    We do ALL the work. We keep you compliant!

    For more information on what your business needs to stay compliant, please visit: The Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario