Human Resources

Western Workplace Labels

The Western workplace labelling system involves the use of a commercially available label which is coded according to the Hazardous Materials Identification System. The codes are interpreted by referring to the Workplace Labels for Hazardous Materials Protection Index. (see diagram below) A wall chart of the Protection Index is available from OH&S. Labels are available from commercial suppliers such as VWR, Fisher, etc., Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) has samples. The information required to determine a rating for health, flammability and reactivity as well as the personal protection is in the MSDS for the chemical. Personnel in OHS can be consulted to assist with the determination of a rating from the MSDS information. The best information can be obtained from the MSDS on the manufacturer’s website. The following websites are excellent alternative sources for MSDS information. CCOHS Chemindex,

In a laboratory, all materials must have a label as follows:

Never leave an unlabelled container in the lab.

Workplace Labels Poster