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Guidance on the application of GHS criteria

Section 1: Examples on the application of GHS criteria 

Acute toxicity (Chapter 3.1)

(a)  Application of data when the available range data spans more than one acute toxicity range estimate in Table 3.1.2(Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2008/23, Annex 2, example 1)

(b)  Application of the “relevant ingredients” criteria in paragraph 3.1.3.3 (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2008/23, Annex 2, example 2)

(c)  Application of the criteria in paragraph 3.1.3.6.1 (c) (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2008/23, Annex 2, example 3)

(d)  Application of the criteria in paragraph 3.1.3.2 (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2008/23, Annex 2, example 4) 

(e)  Dilution bridging principle example using acute toxicity data (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2010/15, Annex 2, example 1)

(f)   Concentration of highly toxic mixtures bridging principle example using acute toxicity data (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2010/15, Annex 2, example 3)

Skin corrosion/irritation (Chapter 3.2)

(a)  Interpolation within one hazard category bridging principle example using skin corrosion/irritation data(Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2010/15, Annex 2, example 4)

(b)  Interpolation within one hazard category using skin corrosion in vitro data from a Human Skin Model (HSM) test (OECD TG 431)(Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2012/25, Annex 2 as amended by INF.35 (24th session)) (Last update: 3 July 2013)

(c) Aerosols bridging principle example using skin corrosion/irritation data. (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2010/15, Annex 2, example 6)

Serious eye damage/eye irritation (Chapter 3.3)

(a)  Application of the relevant ingredients concept for mixtures for serious eye damage/eye irritation(Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2008/23, Annex 2, example 6)

Skin corrosion/irritation (Chapter 3.2) and serious eye damage/eye irritation (Chapter 3.3)
Respiratory or skin sensitization (Chapter 3.4)

(a)  Substantially similar mixtures bridging principle example using skin sensitization data(Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2010/15 as amended by INF.40 (20th session), Annex 2)

Specific target organ toxicity - single exposure (Chapter 3.8)
Specific target organ toxicity - single and repeated exposure (chapters 3.8 and 3.9)

The following examples illustrate how to interpret both the specific target organ toxicity (single and repeated exposure) general considerations (i.e. paragraphs 3.8.1.1 and 3.9.1.1, respectively) that effects covered in other health hazard chapters (i.e. chapters 3.1 to 3.7 and 3.10) are not included in specific target organ toxicity classification.

(a)  Application of criteria in 3.8.1.1 and 3.8.1.6 showing that a substance should not be classified into the specific target organ toxicity (single exposure) hazard class when the target organ effect(s), following a single exposure, are serious adverse health effects (i.e. lethality) meeting the acute toxicity hazard classification criteria (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2020/14, example 1)

(b)  Application of criteria in 3.8.1.1 and 3.8.1.6 when a substance can be classified into both the specific target organ toxicity (single exposure) hazard class, for non-lethal effects, and acute toxicity hazard class, for lethal effects  (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2020/14, example 2)

(c)  Application of criteria in 3.9.1.1 and 3.9.1.6 showing that a substance can be classified into both specific target organ toxicity (repeated exposure) hazard class, for non-lethal effects, and into the acute toxicity hazard class, for lethal effects:

  • Case 1 (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2020/14, example 3)
  • Case 2 (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2020/14, example 4, as amended by informal document INF.32 (39th session)

(d)   Interpretation of the criteria in 3.9.1.1 and 3.9.1.6 and 3.8.1.1 and 3.8.1.6 regarding simultaneous classification into specific target organ toxicity (repeated exposure) hazard class, specific target organ toxicity (single exposure) hazard class and into the acute toxicity hazard class, for lethal effects or not  (Ref. Doc.: ST/SG/AC.10/C.4/2020/14, example 5, as amended by informal document INF.32 (39th session))

Hazardous to the aquatic environment (Chapter 4.1)

Section 2: Sector-specific guidance 

Note: Links to third party web sites are provided as additional information on GHS. The third parties in question have informed the United Nations GHS Sub-Committee o that they had developed guidance on the GHS for their own sectors. However, this does not imply any endorsement of third party’s guidance by the Sub-Committee or the United Nations. The third party remains responsible for the contents of its guidance. Refer also to the “Terms and conditions of use" of the United Nations websites. Users are reminded that competent authorities will decide how to apply the various elements of the GHS based on their needs and the target audiences. 

Last update date: February 22, 2021