All of the “hazard” information about a chemical made in the USA is summarized in the NFPA ratings assigned to every product. (NFPA stands for National Fire Protection Agency.) An NFPA rating often is displayed in a diamond pattern and includes four codes, like this:
“Health” means impact upon human health and well-being; a zero or 1 rating is very good. “Fire” measures how easily something can begin to burn and what happens when it does burn; a 1 or 2 is OK but a “3” would be a highly flammable material and you would want to store it and use it carefully. “Reactivity” specifically pertains to how the chemical mixes with water, as during a fire-fighting event. “0” is great – it means you can spray water on the product and no chemical reaction happens. In text forms, NFPA ratings often are shown like this:
NFPA Health: 1; Fire: 2; Reactivity: 0
Again, and confusingly when compared to TLV ratings, LOW scores are better and HIGH scores (like a “3”) are more risky.
In short, if a customer is concerned about hazards to workers and to their factories, the NFPA ratings can be very helpful. However, these ratings have been generally replaced by the new Globally Harmonized Standards (GHS) which came into effect in 2015. Since NFPA ratings were only used in the USA, the GHS standards are better for products around the world. The MicroCare product specs have all the important facts included on them, and we take great pride in offering complete, accurate and up-to-date information on them.