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Precautionary statements form part of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). They are intended to form a set of standardized phrases giving advice about the correct handling of chemical substances and mixtures, which can be translated into different languages.[1][2] As such, they serve the same purpose as the well-known S-phrases, which they are intended to replace.

Precautionary statements are one of the key elements for the labelling of containers under the GHS, along with:[3]

  • an identification of the product;
  • one or more hazard pictograms (where necessary)
  • a signal word – either DANGER or WARNING – where necessary
  • hazard statements, indicating the nature and degree of the risks posed by the product
  • the identity of the supplier (who might be a manufacturer or importer)

Each precautionary statement is designated a code, starting with the letter P and followed by three digits. Statements which correspond to related hazards are grouped together by code number, so the numbering is not consecutive. The code is used for reference purposes, for example to help with translations, but it is the actual phrase which should appear on labels and safety data sheets.[4] Some precautionary phrases are combinations, indicated by a plus sign "+". In several cases, there is a choice of wording, for example "Avoid breathing dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray": the supplier or regulatory agency should choose the appropriate wording for the product concerned.

General precautionary statements[edit]

  • P101: If medical advice is needed, have product container or label at hand
  • P102: Keep out of reach of children
  • P103: Read label before use

Prevention precautionary statements[edit]

  • P201: Obtain special instructions before use
  • P202: Do not handle until all safety precautions have been read and understood
  • P210: Keep away from heat/sparks/open flames/hot surfaces – No smoking
  • P211: Do not spray on an open flame or other ignition source
  • P220: Keep/Store away from clothing/…/combustible materials
  • P221: Take any precaution to avoid mixing with combustibles
  • P222: Do not allow contact with air
  • P223: Keep away from any possible contact with water, because of violent reaction and possible flash fire
  • P230: Keep wetted with …
  • P231: Handle under inert gas
  • P232: Protect from moisture
  • P233: Keep container tightly closed
  • P234: Keep only in original container
  • P235: Keep cool
  • P240: Ground/bond container and receiving equipment
  • P241: Use explosion-proof electrical/ventilating/light/…/equipment
  • P242: Use only non-sparking tools
  • P243: Take precautionary measures against static discharge
  • P244: Keep reduction valves free from grease and oil
  • P250: Do not subject to grinding/shock/…/friction
  • P251: Pressurized container – Do not pierce or burn, even after use
  • P260: Do not breathe dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray
  • P261: Avoid breathing dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray
  • P262: Do not get in eyes, on skin, or on clothing
  • P263: Avoid contact during pregnancy/while nursing
  • P264: Wash … thoroughly after handling
  • P270: Do not eat, drink or smoke when using this product
  • P271: Use only outdoors or in a well-ventilated area
  • P272: Contaminated work clothing should not be allowed out of the workplace
  • P273: Avoid release to the environment
  • P280: Wear protective gloves/protective clothing/eye protection/face protection
  • P281: Use personal protective equipment as required
  • P282: Wear cold insulating gloves/face shield/eye protection
  • P283: Wear fire/flame resistant/retardant clothing
  • P284: Wear respiratory protection
  • P285: In case of inadequate ventilation wear respiratory protection
  • P231+232: Handle under inert gas. Protect from moisture
  • P235+410: Keep cool. Protect from sunlight

Response precautionary statements[edit]

  • P301: IF SWALLOWED:
  • P302: IF ON SKIN:
  • P303: IF ON SKIN (or hair):
  • P304: IF INHALED:
  • P305: IF IN EYES:
  • P306: IF ON CLOTHING:
  • P307: IF exposed:
  • P308: IF exposed or concerned:
  • P309: IF exposed or you feel unwell:
  • P310: Immediately call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician
  • P311: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician
  • P312: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician if you feel unwell
  • P313: Get medical advice/attention
  • P314: Get Medical advice/attention if you feel unwell
  • P315: Get immediate medical advice/attention
  • P320: Specific treatment is urgent (see … on this label)
  • P321: Specific treatment (see … on this label)
  • P322: Specific measures (see … on this label)
  • P330: Rinse mouth
  • P331: Do NOT induce vomiting
  • P332: If skin irritation occurs:
  • P333: If skin irritation or a rash occurs:
  • P334: Immerse in cool water/wrap in wet bandages
  • P335: Brush off loose particles from skin
  • P336: Thaw frosted parts with lukewarm water. Do not rub affected areas
  • P337: If eye irritation persists:
  • P338: Remove contact lenses if present and easy to do. continue rinsing
  • P340: Remove victim to fresh air and keep at rest in a position comfortable for breathing
  • P341: If breathing is difficult, remove victim to fresh air and keep at rest in a position comfortable for breathing
  • P342: If experiencing respiratory symptoms:
  • P350: Gently wash with plenty of soap and water
  • P351: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes
  • P352: Wash with soap and water
  • P353: Rinse skin with water/shower
  • P360: Rinse immediately contaminated clothing and skin with plenty of water before removing clothes
  • P361: Remove/Take off immediately all contaminated clothing
  • P362: Take off contaminated clothing and wash before reuse
  • P363: Wash contaminated clothing before reuse
  • P370: In case of fire:
  • P371: In case of major fire and large quantities:
  • P372: Explosion risk in case of fire
  • P373: DO NOT fight fire when fire reaches explosives
  • P374: Fight fire with normal precautions from a reasonable distance
  • P375: Fight fire remotely due to the risk of explosion
  • P376: Stop leak if safe to do so
  • P377: Leaking gas fire – do not extinguish unless leak can be stopped safely
  • P378: Use … for extinction
  • P380: Evacuate area
  • P381: Eliminate all ignition sources if safe to do so
  • P391: Collect spillage
  • P301+310: IF SWALLOWED: Immediately call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician
  • P301+312: IF SWALLOWED: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician if you feel unwell
  • P301+330+331: IF SWALLOWED: Rinse mouth. Do NOT induce vomiting
  • P302+334: IF ON SKIN: Immerse in cool water/wrap in wet bandages
  • P302+350: IF ON SKIN: Gently wash with plenty of soap and water
  • P302+352: IF ON SKIN: Wash with soap and water
  • P303+361+353: IF ON SKIN (or hair): Remove/Take off immediately all contaminated clothing. Rinse skin with water/shower
  • P304+312: IF INHALED: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician if you feel unwell
  • P304+340: IF INHALED: Remove victim to fresh air and keep at rest in a position comfortable for breathing
  • P304+341: IF INHALED: If breathing is difficult, remove victim to fresh air and keep at rest in a position comfortable for breathing
  • P305+351+338: IF IN EYES: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes. Remove contact lenses if present and easy to do – continue rinsing
  • P306+360: IF ON CLOTHING: Rinse immediately contaminated clothing and skin with plenty of water before removing clothes
  • P307+311: IF exposed: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician
  • P308+313: IF exposed or concerned: Get medical advice/attention
  • P309+311: IF exposed or you feel unwell: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician
  • P332+313: If skin irritation occurs: Get medical advice/attention
  • P333+313: If skin irritation or a rash occurs: Get medical advice/attention
  • P335+334: Brush off loose particles from skin. Immerse in cool water/wrap in wet bandages
  • P337+313: If eye irritation persists get medical advice/attention
  • P342+311: If experiencing respiratory symptoms: Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician
  • P370+376: In case of fire: Stop leak if safe to do so
  • P370+378: In case of fire: Use … for extinction
  • P370+380: In case of fire: Evacuate area
  • P370+380+375: In case of fire: Evacuate area. Fight fire remotely due to the risk of explosion
  • P371+380+375: In case of major fire and large quantities: Evacuate area. Fight fire remotely due to the risk of explosion

Storage precautionary statements[edit]

  • P401: Store …
  • P402: Store in a dry place
  • P403: Store in a well ventilated place
  • P404: Store in a closed container
  • P405: Store locked up
  • P406: Store in a corrosive resistant/… container with a resistant inner liner
  • P407: Maintain air gap between stacks/pallets
  • P410: Protect from sunlight
  • P411: Store at temperatures not exceeding … °C/… °F
  • P412: Do not expose to temperatures exceeding 50 °C/122 °F
  • P413: Store bulk masses greater than … kg/… lbs at temperatures not exceeding … °C/… °F
  • P420: Store away from other materials
  • P422: Store contents under …
  • P402+404: Store in a dry place. Store in a closed container
  • P403+233: Store in a well ventilated place. Keep container tightly closed
  • P403+235: Store in a well ventilated place. Keep cool
  • P410+403: Protect from sunlight. Store in a well ventilated place
  • P410+412: Protect from sunlight. Do not expose to temperatures exceeding 50 °C/122 °F
  • P411+235: Store at temperatures not exceeding … °C/… °F. Keep cool

Disposal precautionary statements[edit]

  • P501: Dispose of contents/container to …

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The United Nations has published the list of GHS precautionary statements in all UN official languages (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish): it can be found in Annex 3 of GHS Rev.2 for the corresponding language.
  2. ^ A list of translations into all the European Union official languages can be found in Annex IV to the CLP Regulation, on pages 210–324 of the official English-language version.
  3. ^ Part 1, section 1.4.10.5.2, GHS Rev.2
  4. ^ Part 1, section 1.4.10.5.2(c)(ii), GHS Rev.2

References[edit]

External links[edit]

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