Re: MSDS sheets and the Curse of Schiff

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From:Mick Rentsch <> (by way of histonet)
To:histonet <>
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Dear John,
the reason you don't see any Dangerous Goods Labelling is that the final
product is not a "Dangerous Goods" acc. to Legislation;  despite this
however it is "Harmful" acc to OHS legislation at least here in Australia.
There are at least three separate pieces of Legislation which govern
labelling of Laboratory Reagents and Chemicals in Australia, these being the
Dangerous Goods Act and Aust. Code for transport of Dangerous Goods,
Worksafe Australia Criteria for Classification of Hazardous Substances and
the  System for Uniform Scheduling of Poisons and Drugs. (Poisons Act).
Insummary Schiff Reagent is a Hazardous Substance and the label must carry
the phrase "Hazardous acc. to Criteria Worksafe Australia".
If you email me your Postal Address I'll send you a copy of my MSDS for
Schiff Reagent. I don't think we're allowed to send attachments via the
histonet, but if you are in a hurry for this also let me know and I'll try
and send it to your email outside of histonet. It will be in MS word V.6
Regards Mike Rentsch
-----Original Message-----
From: J. A. Kiernan <>
To: Alex Brown <>
Cc: 'Histonet' <>
Date: Wednesday, 7 October 1998 4:47
Subject: Re: MSDS sheets and the Curse of Schiff

>On Tue, 6 Oct 1998, Alex Brown wrote:
>> I've been reviewing our COSHH Risk Assessments for a forthcoming
>> CPA visit and have discovered we don't have one for Schiff's reagent .
>> We buy it ready made from BDH and the bottle doesn't have any hazard or
>> warning symbols on it. I'm finding it hard to believe that Schiff's
>> reagent isn't hazardous to some degree, so would appreciate any
>> comments.
>  When I buy a bottle of ready-made Schiff, it comes with several
>  pages of MSDS sheets: for basic fuchsine, hydrochloric acid and
>  sodium metabisulphite. These are completely consumed when
>  the reagent is made, so it doesn't actually contain any of these
>  substances (except possibly a slight excess of dilute hydrochloric
>  acid). There is no mention of the sulphur dioxide fumes, and not
>  even a hint about the greatest hazard, which is the deposition
>  of purple stains on everone and everything accidentally touched
>  by the colourless liquid.
>                             John Kiernan
>                             London, Canada.

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