National Fire Protection Association Hazard Identification System

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) constructed a risk identification system for Hazmat team or Emergency Responder that is still used until now. Before this, some chemical producer used NFPA diamonds on their products but nowadays it required using Globally Harmonized System labelling. The NFPA diamond provides a quick visual regarding how to handle the situation imposing of the health hazard, flammability, reactivity, and special hazards if the chemical caught on fire.

The NFPA diamond consists of four color-coded fields: blue, red, yellow, and white. The blue, red, and yellow fields which represent health hazard, flammability, and reactivity, respectively use a numbering scale ranging from 0 to 4. A value of 0 means that the material poses essentially no hazard, whereas a rating of 4 indicates extreme danger.

The white field is used to convey special hazards. The higher number in the scale impose higher hazard. The NFPA system was developed especially for fire fighter or emergency responder involving fire emergency.

The system is not to suitable to use if anything happen in laboratory setting or for first-first responder. Nowadays in Malaysia, the NFPA system had been changed to GHS system slowly. The system is still valid to use in Malaysia even though the existence is slowly abolished.The information in the signage is direct forward and whoever that familiar with the signage only can use that.

The signage shown only stated the hazard not how to response if anything happen to the hazardous substances. In conclusion, NFPA identification system is also part of hazmat recognition and easy to refer if you familiar with the hazmat diamond.

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