Fact Sheet on Globally Harmonized System for Classification and Labelling of Chemicals

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Hazard Communication Information Sheet 


reflecting the US OSHA Implementation of the 

Globally Harmonized System of Classification 

and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) 


Produced by the SCHC-OSHA Alliance  

GHS/HazCom Information Sheet Workgroup



         Corrosive to Metal


   March 2017



How does HazCom 2012 define Corrosive to Metal?


A chemical which is corrosive to metal means a chemical which by chemical action will materially damage, or even destroy, metal.   

A real life example of metal corrosion is rust on iron.  


The testing to determine corrosivity to metals is conducted with steel and/or aluminum. The classification depends on the rate that 

corrosion occurs and the degree of damage to the metal. If a chemical or mixture causes corrosion, but not at the specific rate 

determined by the test, the chemical or mixture is not considered to be corrosive to metal. Sensitivity to corrosion varies with the 

particular metal. For instance, in the example given, water would not be classified as corrosive to metal because the rate at which 

water corrodes iron does not satisfy the classification criteria. 


There is no direct correlation between substances that are corrosive to the skin and/or eyes and substances that are corrosive to 

metals. The converse is also true. 


This is a new category for classification for the US; OSHA HCS 1994 did not include a category for corrosive to metal. 


How is Corrosive to Metal classified under OSHA HazCom 2012? 

Table 1 presents the OSHA HCS classification criteria for chemicals corrosive to metals.   

Table 2 presents the OSHA HCS label elements and precautionary statements for chemicals corrosive to metals.  


Table 1: Classification Criteria 



Category 1 



Corrosion rate on either steel or aluminum surfaces exceeding 6.25 mm per year at a test temperature of 

55°C (131°F) when tested* on both materials. 

*The HCS does not require testing; data from available scientific literature and other evidence may be used in lieu of testing.  

However, if testing is performed, the method is provided in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria (link below). 


Table 2: Label Elements 



Signal Word


Hazard Statement 



May be corrosive to metals 



To learn more…




OSHA: Hazard Communication :  





SCHC site






The information contained in this sheet is believed to accurately represent current OSHA HCS requirements. However, 

SCHC cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of this information. Users are responsible for determining the 

suitability and appropriateness of these materials for any particular application. 


Through the OSHA and SCHC Alliance, SCHC developed this sheet for informational purposes only. It does not necessarily 

reflect the official views of OSHA or the U.S. Department of Labor. 

Copyright © SCHC 2017 │Cannot be reproduced or distributed for commercial purposes. 




Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, 

employers are responsible

 for providing a safe and 

healthy workplace and 

workers have rights

.  OSHA can help answer questions or concerns from 

employers and workers.  OSHA's 

On-site Consultation Program

 offers free and confidential advice to 

small and medium-sized businesses, with priority given to high-hazard worksites. For more information, 

contact your 

regional or area OSHA office

, call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), or visit 




Document Outline

  • How does HazCom 2012 define Corrosive to Metal?
  • How is Corrosive to Metal classified under OSHA HazCom 2012?
  • Table 1 presents the OSHA HCS classification criteria for chemicals corrosive to metals.
  • Table 2 presents the OSHA HCS label elements and precautionary statements for chemicals corrosive to metals.
    • Table 1: Classification Criteria
  • *The HCS does not require testing; data from available scientific literature and other evidence may be used in lieu of testing.  However, if testing is performed, the method is provided in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria (link below).
    • Table 2: Label Elements

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