22 Aug 2018

WHMISWorkplace Hazardous Material Information System (WHMIS) regulations in Canada have been updated to ensure the safety of workers at workplaces. It is the right of workers to know about the hazards in handling chemicals at their workplace, the amended regulation was published in the Newfoundland and Labrador Gazette on 09 May 2018.

The new amendments in the regulation will enhance chemical safety amongst workers and help identify potentially harmful chemicals in all organizations. The transition to new WHMIS 2015 happens in 4 phases, the table below outlines applicable regulations through the transition period.

Phase Timing Suppliers Employers
Manufacturers and Importers Distributors
Phase 1 From Feb 11, 2015 to May 31, 2018 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 Consult F/P/T regulator
Phase 2 From June 1, 2018 to Aug 31, 2018 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015
Phase 3 From Sept 1, 2018 to Nov 30, 2018 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015
Completion December 1, 2018 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 2015


Most prominent WHIMIS 2015 changes:

  1. A change to the classification of the hazardous product in a category or subcategory of a hazard class
  2. A change in hazard class
  3. A change in the requirements for protecting workers against the hazard presented by the hazardous product
  4. SDS will be required to be updated within 90 days of the supplier being aware of the new information.

In order to smoothen the transition process to comply with WHMIS, Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety has laid out some suggestions:

  1. Understand how the hazard classification criteria of WHMIS 1988 and WHMIS 2015 differ.
  2. Establish and maintain an accurate list of all hazardous products in your workplace
  3. Review training processes and materials to a make sure they are WHMIS 2015 ready.
  4. If you still have WHMIS 1988 product in your workplace as the transition deadline approaches, request a WHMIS 2015 SDS and label from your supplier.
  5. Plan to completely use up any WHMIS 1988 product before the transition deadline.
  6. Safely dispose of product that cannot be brought into compliance.

Download the CCOHS FAQs sheet for more details.

Do you want to learn more on collecting SDS from your suppliers and complete transition to WHMIS 2015 before the deadline? Talk to our compliance experts at ComplianceXL.