requirements for equipment such as fire suppression systems and ventilation systems for flammables and defines the maximum allowable quantities for flammable materials within the laboratory.

6.   Fire Protection Guide to Hazardous Materials, 13th edition (NFPA, 2001). This resource contains hazard data on hundreds of chemicals and guidance on handling and storage of, and emergency procedures for, those chemicals.

7.   Bretherick’s Handbook of Reactive Chemical Hazards, 7th edition (Urben, 2007). This handbook is a comprehensive compilation of examples of violent reactions, fires, and explosions due to unstable chemicals, as well as reports on known incompatibility between reactive chemicals.

8.   Hazardous Chemicals Handbook, 2nd edition (Carson and Mumford, 2002). This book is geared toward an industrial audience. It provides basic information about chemical hazards and synthesizes technical guidance from a number of authorities in chemical safety. The chapters are organized by hazard (e.g., “Toxic Chemicals,” “Reactive Chemicals,” and “Cryogens”).

9.   Sax’s Dangerous Properties of Industrial Materials, 11th edition, three volumes (Lewis, 2004). Also available on CD, this compilation of data for more than 26,000 chemical substances contains much of the information found in a typical MSDS, including physical and chemical properties; data on toxicity, flammability, reactivity, and explosivity; and a concise safety profile describing symptoms of exposure. It also contains immediately dangerous to life or health (IDLH) levels for approximately 1,000 chemicals, and for laboratory personnel it is a useful reference for checking the accuracy of an MSDS and a valuable resource in preparing a laboratory’s own LCSSs.

10.   Patty’s Industrial Toxicology, 5th edition (Bingham et al., 2001). Also available on CD, this authoritative reference on the toxicology of different classes of organic and inorganic compounds focuses on health effects; hazards due to flammability, reactivity, and explosivity are not covered.

11.   Proctor and Hughes’ Chemical Hazards of the Workplace, 5th edition (Hathaway and Proctor, 2004). This resource provides an excellent summary of the toxicology of more than 600 chemicals. Most entries are one to two pages and include signs and symptoms of exposure with reference to specific clinical reports.

12.   Sittig’s Handbook of Toxic and Hazardous Chemicals and Carcinogens, 5th edition, two volumes (Pohanish, 2008). This very good reference, which is written with the industrial hygienists and first responder in mind, covers 2,100 substances.

13.   Clinical Toxicology, 1st edition (Ford et al., 2001). This book is designed for clinicians and other health care providers. It describes the symptoms and treatment of poisoning from various sources.

14.   Casarett and Doull’s Toxicology: The Basic Science of Poisons, 7th edition (Klaassen, 2007). This complete and readable overview of toxicology is a good textbook but is not arranged as a ready reference for handling laboratory emergencies.

15.   Catalog of Teratogenic Agents, 11th edition (Shepard and Lemire, 2004). This catalog is one of the best references available on the subject of reproductive and developmental toxins.

16.   Wiley Guide to Chemical Incompatibilities, 2nd edition (Pohanish and Greene, 2003). Simple-to-use reference listing the incompatibilities of more than 11,000 chemicals. Includes information about chemical incompatibility, conditions that favor undesirable reactions, and corrosivity data.

17.   Occupational Health Guidelines for Chemical Hazards (HHS/CDC/NIOSH, 1981) and a supplement (HHS/CDC/NIOSH, 1995). The guidelines currently cover more than 400 substances and are based on the information assembled under the Standards Completion Program, which served as the basis for the promulgation of federal occupational health regulations (“substance-specific standards”). Typically five pages long and written clearly at a level readily understood by trained laboratory personnel, each set of guidelines includes information on physical, chemical, and toxicological properties; signs and symptoms of exposure; and considerable detail on control measures, medical surveillance practices, and emergency first-aid procedures. However, some guidelines date back to 1978 and may not be current, particularly with regard to chronic toxic effects. These guidelines are available on the NIOSH Web site (

A number of Web-based resources also exist. Some of these are NIOSH Databases and Information Resources ( and TOXNET through the National Library of Medicine (NLM;

4.B.7 Computer Services

In addition to computerized MSDSs, a number of computer databases are available that supply data for creating or supplementing MSDSs, for example, the NLM and Chemical Abstracts (CA) databases. These

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