3rd May, 2017
The old orange square COSHH symbols are finally being phased out for good on the 1st of June 2017.
That gives you one month to get your head around the new chemical hazard symbols and their meanings.
Don’t worry though. You should already be fairly familiar with the new red diamond symbols. They have been around since 2010!
So already 7 years old, the red diamonds will be everywhere from next month (well, not everywhere, but on any hazardous chemicals or mixtures!).
What are these hazards and what do they mean?
Explosive; mass explosion hazard.
Explosive; severe projection hazard.
Explosive; fire, blast or projection hazard.
May mass explode in fire.
Extremely flammable gas.
Extremely flammable aerosol.
Highly flammable liquid and vapour.
Flammable liquid and vapour.
Flammable solid .
May cause or intensify fire; oxidiser.
May cause fire or explosion; strong oxidiser.
Usually found on bleach, oxygen for medical purposes etc.
Contains gas under pressure - may explode if heated.
Contains refrigerated gas - may cause cryogenic burns or injury.
Usually found on gas containers.
May be corrosive to metals.
Causes severe skin burns and eye damage.
Usually found on drain cleaners, acetic acid, hydrochloric acid, ammoniac etc.
Fatal if swallowed.
Fatal in contact with skin.
Fatal if inhaled.
Toxic: if swallowed.
Toxic in contact with skin.
Toxic if inhaled.
May cause respiratory irritation.
May cause drowsiness or dizziness.
May cause an allergic skin reaction.
Causes serious eye irritation.
Causes skin irritation.
Harmful if swallowed.
Harmful in contact with skin.
Harmful if inhaled.
Harms public health and the environment by destroying ozone in the upper atmosphere.
May be fatal if swallowed and enters airways.
Causes damage to organs.
May cause damage to organs.
May damage fertility or the unborn child.
Suspected of damaging fertility or the unborn child.
May cause cancer.
Suspected of causing cancer.
May cause genetic defects.
Suspected of causing genetic defects.
May cause allergy or asthma symptoms or breathing difficulties if inhaled.
Very toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects.
Toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects.
Usually found on pesticides, biocides, petrol, turpentine etc.