Labeling of Containers

UNB Reference Number: 7826
Authorized by: J. M. Anderson, President,
Effective Date: December 1, 1978
Revised: March 2014
PDF version


To outline policy covering labeling of containers.  To ensure compliance with the City of Fredericton's Wellfield Protected Area Designation Order (WfPADO).


Faculty, staff and students.


  • Labeling of "hazardous materials" used or stored in the workplace is regulated by the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (W.H.M.I.S.) Regulations of the N.B. Occupational Health & Safety Act.
  • Labeling of "dangerous goods" in transit, delivered to, or shipped from, the workplace is legislated by the federal Transportation of Dangerous Goods (T.D.G.) Regulations.
  • Labeling of "radioactive substances and nuclear devices" is regulated by the Nuclear Safety & Control Act (N.S.C.A.) and is the responsibility of UNB Radioisotope User Permit Holders under the guidance of the Radiation Safety Officer.
  • Further, good laboratory practice requires that all containers be properly labelled as to content and current inventory lists maintained. Containers shall be inspected routinely for any signs of deterioration and for the integrity of the label.
  • Erasable markings, abbreviations, formulae and codes should be avoided when labeling containers. Containers shall be dated when received and first opened.
  • The risk phrase 'FLAMMABLE', 'CORROSIVE' or 'TOXIC' shall be used on the label of a container where appropriate. It is particularly important that any statement of hazard appearing on the original container be placed on a new container.
  • The risk phrase 'DANGER', 'WARNING' or 'CAUTION' shall be used on the label of a container to indicate the severity of any hazard where appropriate.
  • The risk phrase 'STORE SEPARATE FROM ACIDS AND COMBUSTIBLE MATERIAL' hsall be used on the label of a container where appropriate.


  • WHMIS requires that all hazardous materials used or stored in the workplace are labelled, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) are available, a chemical inventory is maintained, and instructions for safe handling are communicated to employees and students.
  • A hazardous material or "controlled product" is any material which falls into one or more of the six classes as defined by the W.H.M.I.S. Regulations:
    • CLASS A Compressed Gas
    • CLASS B Flammable & Combustible
    • CLASS C Oxidizer
    • CLASS D Poisonous & Infectious
    • CLASS E Corrosive
    • CLASS F Reactive
  • Two types of WHMIS labels are recognizable by hatch mark borders:
Original "Supplier" label includes:"Workplace" label on decanted products includes:
Chemical Name Chemical Name
Supplier Name Precautions
Reference to MSDS Reference to MSDS
Hazard Symbol
Risk Phase
First Aid Information


  • MSDS are required to be obtained from the supplier for every hazardous material used or stored in the workplace. MSDS provide information on chemical, physical and toxicological properties; precautionary and emergency procedures. MSDS may be stored in electronic format or as hard copies as long as they are readily accessible.  Note:  MSDS must be replaced every 3 years or as new information becomes available.
  • Instruction of staff and students is a departmental responsibility. The Safety Office is available to assist with the identification of training needs and provision of training aids.


  • A "dangerous good" is any material which is being shipped, received, or is in transit, and falls into one or more of the nine classes under the TDG Regulations.
    • CLASS 1 Explosive
    • CLASS 2 Compressed gas
    • CLASS 3 Flammable liquid
    • CLASS 4 Flammable solid
    • CLASS 5 Oxidizer, organic peroxide
    • CLASS 6 Poisonous, infectious
    • CLASS 7 Radioactive
    • CLASS 8 Corrosive
    • CLASS 9 Miscellaneous
    • (TDG placards and labels accompany each class)
  • Any dangerous good in transit or in storage must display a "supplier" label and a "TDG class label" on the container. Any vehicle carrying dangerous goods above prescribed limits must display a "TDG placard" on all four sides of the vehicle.
  • University personnel who ship, receive or transport dangerous goods (stores keepers, staff responsible for shipping, receiving and drivers) must be trained and certified in TDG. Training is coordinated by the Safety Office and certification is valid for three years.
  • The use of personal vehicles to transport dangerous goods on campus is to be discouraged. Transportation can be arranged through the Physical Plant Department.